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>From a records management standpoint this is an interesting election.
Looking beneath the service (after avoiding all the rhetoric, mudslinging
and namecalling) one finds that a lot of this revolves around process and
procedures. Each state specifies in its own way how an election is to  be
held, how an election can be protested and if necessary how the recount
should be handled.

Could the ballot design have been better?
Some say yes and some say no. In Duval County Florida they placed the
candidates on two separate pages names did not oppose each other as in Palm
Beach county, but rather you turned the page. Inadvertently many people
selected one presidential candidate on the first page, then turned the page
and selected another resulting in the selection of two candidates and the
ballot being rejected. One county official noted that the error could have
resulted from the strong effort to get out the vote in which people were
told to be sure and select a candidate on EACH page.

Open Records/FOIA request
Florida lays out how elections can be protested (102.166  Protest of
election returns; procedure)
even allowing for the request for manual recounts
<snip>
(4)(a)  Any candidate whose name appeared on the ballot, any political
committee that supports or opposes an issue which appeared on the ballot, or
any political party whose candidates' names appeared on the ballot may file
a written request with the county canvassing board for a manual recount. The
written request shall contain a statement of the reason the manual recount
is being requested.
<snip>

They even tell you the form that the protest can take.
102.167  Form of protest of election returns.--

So has anyone filed a FOIA request to see the reason stated for requesting a
manual recount?

Process
As stated earlier the key issue is process. In New Mexico someone failed to
select a button in a computer program that would tabulate straight ticket
ballots, result straight ticket ballots were not counted. The error was
caught later and the ballots were counted.

All elements of records management play a role in the election process from
the design of the ballots down to the storage of the election results.
See the full statutes click on the following link
<http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=
Ch0102/ch0102.htm>

My two cents and now I will go back to real work.


Peter A. Kurilecz CRM, CA
Manager, Records Management Group
Woodside Summit Group Inc
Midlothian, Virginia
Office: 804-744-1247 x23
Fax: 804-744-4947
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