Early voting errors prompt paper ballots

Early voting errors prompt paper ballots
Paper ballots were issued after some voting machines went down. (Source: Courtesy: Voter)

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A small number of errors with Louisiana’s early voting machines has led to some voters having to use a paper ballot, election officials said Tuesday, Oct. 1.

Louisiana Secretary of State spokesman Tyler Brey says, as of late Tuesday afternoon, the error has only occurred 20 times among the nearly 120,000 votes cast statewide thus far.

At least one of the errors occurred with an early voting machine at the Coursey Boulevard location in Baton Rouge.

The touchscreen of an early voting machine used in Louisiana shows an error message. Paper ballots were used in place of the electronic machines that went down.
The touchscreen of an early voting machine used in Louisiana shows an error message. Paper ballots were used in place of the electronic machines that went down. (Source: Louisiana Secretary of State)

In that case, the machine displayed an error message after the voter had made his selections for all races and tried to submit his ballot, that voter reported.

Brey says the paper ballots are counted on election night after being verified by the Board of Elections Supervisors in each parish.

The five-member board is made up of that parish’s Registrar of Voters, Clerk of Court, an appointee from both the Republican and Democrat Parish Executive Committees and an appointee from the Governor’s office.

Each parish has its own board. While the person filling out a paper ballot is required to put his or her name on the ballot, the board separates that information from the ballot on election night to maintain the secrecy of the ballot, Brey said.

The identifying voter information is perforated and easily removable from the actual ballot, he said. Tuesday marked the end of day three of early voting. Brey said the turnout thus far has exceeded that of the first five days of early voting in 2015.

Early voting ends Saturday, Oct. 5. Both LSU and Southern have home football games on election day, Oct. 12, with multiple local and statewide races on the ballot including the race for governor.

Copyright 2019 WAFB. All rights reserved.