A Legitimate Recount Effort in Ohio

“An effort led by Common Cause and the Alliance for Democracy is underway in Ohio to conduct a statewide recount.

Efforts to launch an official statewide recount of the Ohio presidential vote are underway. While it’s unclear if a recount will result in a Kerry victory, it’s likely to highlight many flaws in Ohio elections that may have tilted results toward Republicans and against Democrats.

…While there have been many accounts of problems associated with the Ohio vote, from reports of 90,000 spoiled ballots, to software glitches resulting in more votes tallied than the number of registered voters, to new voters not being notified where their polling places were, to too few voting machines in Democratic strongholds, the only legal process that could immediately address some of these concerns is a recount.

The recount would be just that: a recounting of all the votes cast. If the results change, meaning more votes are added to Kerry’s total – then the official result, what the secretary of state certifies, is changed.

“It’s re-certified,” Arnebeck said. “If Kerry emerges victorious, he’s president.” Of course, a certification in Kerry’s favor for Ohio won’t take away the fact that Bush won the popular vote by 3.5 million votes.

And the clock is ticking on the Ohio process. In coming days, the Ohio secretary of state is expected to announce that the provisional ballots have been counted. A losing candidate for president then has 5 days to request a recount, filing the paperwork and filing fee. That cost is $10 per precinct, which comes to slightly more than $110,000. As of Friday morning, $35,000 had been raised. There is a possibility that not all Ohio counties will finish the provsional ballot count, which would prompt those seeking the recount to pursue other actions, Arnebeck said.” (AlterNet)