Clerk Hall Informs Candidates, Jurisdictions 2014 Election Results are Final

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Boulder County, Colo. Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall notified the coordinating entities who participated in the Boulder County election that the results for the 2014 General Election are final and has issued certificates of election to all county candidates who received a majority vote.

 

To finalize the election, as stated by law, the Boulder County Clerk prepared and made available to the public a statement of the total number of votes cast in the election for each candidate and for and against each ballot issue.

 

Last week, Clerk Hall received word that the Secretary of State’s office accepted the official statewide abstract of votes cast for state races and issues. “I had hoped the Secretary’s decision would have persuaded our canvass board to certify the local results, but that has not happened,” stated Clerk Hall. “We still hope that they will go ahead and do so, but, in the meantime, we had to move forward. Four canvass board members will not be allowed to hold the will of the Boulder County voters hostage.”

 

Although some have raised questions about the effect of the canvass board’s prior decision not to certify, Clerk Hall says the election results stand. “The canvass board’s decision not to certify the county’s abstract of votes cast does not nullify the election of county candidates or decisions on county and local ballot issues,” remarked Hall. “If that were the case, it would mean that four partisan members appointed by parties whose candidates received only a small percentage of the votes in Boulder County could override the will of 144,405 voters.”

 

Because the margin of victory was so large in all of the races and ballot issues involved, no recount was triggered or requested. At this point, challenges to the election of candidates to office or the result of a ballot issue election are allowed only in narrow circumstances, such as fraud or corruption that could change the result of the election. These types of issues could only be decided by a judge – not the canvass board. Additionally, Boulder County’s election had no documented discrepancies in the audit or the reconciliation that impacted the outcome of any contest. As a result, the canvass board should have certified.

 

The final official election results are available at www.BoulderCountyVotes.org.

 

Additional Background Information:

Canvass board’s role in an election: The canvass board’s role is to reconcile the number of ballots counted to number of ballots cast and ensure that the number of ballots cast does not exceed the total amount of voters in the county. They are then requested to certify the official abstract of votes.

 

Composition of the canvass board: The canvass board is composed of two members from each of the “major” political parties plus the Clerk. In the 2010 gubernatorial race, candidate Tom Tancredo of the American Constitution Party received more than 10% of the vote statewide, the American Constitution Party (ACN) earned “major” party status until the next gubernatorial election, this year. Thus, even though the ACN Party only represents approximately 300 voters in Boulder County, they have had two party representatives (out of six) on the canvass board since 2010 (this will no longer be the case after this year as there was no ACN candidate that received 10% of the vote this fall). 

 

Appointment to the canvass board: Each county chair is responsible for appointing two members to the canvass board no later than 15 days prior to the election.

 

2014 Canvass Board Vote: This year, the canvass board signed off on the election audit, which tests the election’s vote tallying systems and processes to ensure accuracy, but in a 4-to-3 decision voted to not certify the election results. This was in spite the fact that there were no significant discrepancies in the audit or in the reconciliation reports.

 

Secretary of State Rule Change: After the Primary Election, there was a Secretary of State rule change during the August rule revision period. There was previously an election rule allowing a county clerk to certify local election results when the canvass board failed to certify. This provision was deleted. Nothing in Colorado law states that a canvass board’s decision not to certify the county’s abstract of votes nullifies the election of county candidates or decisions on county or local ballot issues.

 

- BoulderCountyVotes.org -

- On Twitter: @BoCoClerk 



Mircalla Wozniak
Communications Specialist
Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s Office
Office: 303-413-7766
mwozniak@bouldercounty.org


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