Who could have predicted problems in the recount would occur in Waukesha County? What is wrong with those folks?
After more than a half-hour of meticulous instructions and ground rules relayed by Waukesha County’s chief canvasser, retired Judge Robert G. Mawdsley, questions were raised about the very first bag of ballots to be counted, from the Town of Brookfield.
As canvassers and tabulators compared a numbered seal on a bag with the number recorded for that bag by a town election inspector who prepared the paperwork on election night, the numbers didn’t match.
“What a great way to start,” one official tabulator said.
Observers from the campaigns of Justice David Prosser and JoAnne Kloppenburg both agreed, however, that the error seemed to be in the inspector’s use of a “2” instead of a “3.” Numbers on the sealing tag and on the bag did match. Both sides and the Board of Canvassers agreed that the bag should be opened and the votes counted.
In addition to the mis-numbered inspection sheet, another matter was the absence of three applications for absentee ballots – detected when all the “R’s” of an alphabetized collection were missing. The applications were summoned from the town hall, and they were reconciled with the absentee ballots, Mawdsley said.
The final question of the morning involved a missing “remade” ballot – a copy of an original absentee ballot that could not be fed through the ballot-reading machines. That occurs, for example, if the voter used pen instead of pencil to connect the arrows on the ballot. The canvass board had five original ballots that could not be fed through machines, but only four copies. The Government Accountability Board was being asked for advice on that matter.