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Carbon County Election Recount Continues After Error

JIM THORPE, Pa. — We are a week past Election Day, but troubles at the polls have left quite the mess for Carbon County’s election board, and have s...

JIM THORPE, Pa. -- We are a week past Election Day, but troubles at the polls have left quite the mess for Carbon County's election board, and have set the stage for a showdown in court.

There's still a flurry of activity at the Carbon County Election Board. The office is counting every vote by hand, a long and tedious process, but one election board chairman and Carbon County Commissioner William O'Gurek says is worth it.

"I think the public not only wants an accurate count, they absolutely deserve an accurate count," said Commissioner O'Gurek.

A glitch in the new voting machines resulted in thousands of votes not being counted.

The office was also hearing complaints from voters who didn't trust the new machines.

"We've heard about bleeding Sharpies through ballots, people wondering if they counted as votes," O'Gurek said.

That's why the election board voted unanimously to do a recount by hand.

"When we get through this process, I don't think the election results change, but what it will do is give a stamp of approval or help to restore confidence to the voters of this county."

The Carbon County Republican Committee responded by filing a complaint against the election board, claiming the board is violating state election law in several ways. For example, the cost of a recount usually falls on the candidate that requests one. The committee says, in this case, the county taxpayers are taking on the cost.

In a statement, the committee says, in part, "The Carbon County Republican Committee finds no contempt or error with those county employees physically counting the ballots or with the director of elections. The Carbon County Republican Committee believes in the integrity of the new voting equipment. The injunction seeks to have the election law followed in its entirety."

The election board has 20 days to complete the hand count. It began on Saturday.

A hearing with the Republican committee is scheduled for next week to determine if the hand count can continue.

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