Missing ballot box may be reason for vote discrepancy in Midland County election

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A box found by Midland County election officials as they conducted a recount of the November election contained 836 ballots from that election, the Midland Reporter-Telegram reported.

A county employee discovered the sealed ballot box on Thursday, but it was initially unclear if the box, which was obviously full of ballots due to its heft, was from this election or last year’s election. County Attorney Russell Malm petitioned the local district court for the box to be opened.

Christine Foreman, co-chair of We Choose Our Future, a group that supports a school bond issue that was up for a vote in the November election, told the newspaper she suspects the “mystery box” is to blame for the ballot discrepancy between a Nov. 22 recount and initial electronic tabulations.

She added, however, that she doesn’t believe there was fraud involved, just “evidence of incompetence and negligence.”

Elections Administrator Deborah Land previously insisted there was no missing ballot box, the Reporter-Telegram noted.

Foreman announced this week she will contest the results of the election, in which the bond voted failed. Brandon Hodges, chairman of Better Bond for Midland, which opposed the bond, said he will also contest the election results.

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