Dallas County is requesting a recount of Super Tuesday votes, including from the Democratic primary, after thumb drives with uncounted votes were found. Forty-four thumb drives with possible uncounted votes were discovered in Dallas County after officials found a discrepancy between the number of voters who had checked in to vote and the number of ballots actually received.
The Number of Ballots Received Didn’t Match the Number of Voters Who Checked In
Toni Pippins-Poole, Dallas County election administrator, said in a filed petition that they first realized there was an issue when they discovered that the number of ballots received from some polling places didn’t match the number of voters who had checked in, the Texas Tribune reported.
Pippins-Poole released a statement on Saturday which reads:
On March 6, 2020, I filed a petition with the District Court, in my official capacity as Dallas County Elections Administrator, to re-open the Central Counting Station for a recount and re-tabulation of the Dallas County March 3, 2020 Democratic and Republican primary elections. During the reconciliation process after Election Day, it was determined that there were discrepancies with thumb drives from 44 of the precinct scanner and tabulator machines. Of the 44 thumb drives, 16 were not received in a timely manner to the Elections Department and 28 were from voting machines not scheduled to be used but were used by volunteer election officials. When Dallas County procured new election equipment, we ensured that paper ballot records were included with our electronic system. With this paper backup, and in consultation with the Texas Secretary of State, I have asked the District Court to allow Dallas County to authorize the recount of the paper ballots through the central counting station tabulator. If the Court grants this petition, the Dallas County Elections Department will post notice of the recount and make the results available to the public as quickly as possible.”
Issues were discovered with thumb drives containing ballots from 44 precincts. Sixteen of those drives weren’t received “in a timely manner” by the Elections Department, and 28 were from voting machines that weren’t supposed to be used that day. Pippins-Poole filed a petition and affidavit to recount votes from both the Democratic and Republican primary elections.
Ballot counts are on flash drives that are supposed to be turned over to the county, Texas Tribune reported.
Which of the 44 precincts weren’t counted and just how many votes were not included isn’t yet known, WFAA reported. With a total of 454 voting centers, the uncounted ballots could represent 10 percent of the total Dallas County precincts. Each precinct had one or more machines that received backup paper ballots, KBTX reported.
The petition notes that recounting would involving taking those 44 machines’ paper ballots and running them through a central counting station tabulator, WFAA reported. Pippins-Poole is requesting that all parties attend and observe the recount.
You can read the full petition in NBC DFW’s story here.
Biden Won the Texas Primary by 34.47% to Sanders’ 29.96%
It’s not clear if the recount could affect the result of any of the elections. Joe Biden was declared the winner of the Texas Democratic primary with 716,316 votes to Sanders’ 622,563, which is 34.47% to Sanders’ 29.96%. So there were 93,753 votes separating the two. In Dallas County, there were a total of 231,688 votes reported, according to Decision Desk’s results. Biden led Sanders by 40.32% to 27.02%, a count of 93,426 votes to Sanders’ 62,611 votes. You can see the Texas results in the Decision Desk chart below. Go here if you don’t see a results table below.
Decision Desk’s delegate tracker currently places Biden with 602 delegates to Sanders’ 523. You can see the delegate tracker below.
Pippins-Poole has served with the Dallas County Elections department since 1988, according to her bio. She was appointed as the Elections Administrator in 2011.