Vote Count Problems in JeffCo

8 Nov

Update: Wes Wagner responds.

After the polls closed in Missouri Tuesday night, as returns were coming in from across the state, things were very quiet out of Hillsboro. There were questions on Twitter and Facebook asking, “Where are the results?” I queried Post-Dispatch reporter Leah Thorsen, and this was her response at 9:20 PM:

County Clerk Wes Wagner turned out to be incorrect. Just after 10 PM, someone stated on Facebook that he had heard that no results would come out until all votes were counted, instead of releasing numbers a few precincts at a time. This turned out to be what happened.

About 20 minutes later, Democratic candidate for the 115th House District Rich McCane reported that there wouldn’t be any results from JeffCo until the next day. This turned out to be incorrect, though, as results finally came out at about 10:45. But before they did, Thorsen expressed some exasperation:

KJFF Radio was perplexed as well:

Not only were reporters and casual observers perturbed by this delay, so were the candidates. Democratic incumbent public adminstrator Bruce King said in the Leader, when contacted by a reporter shorty after the results were released (but before he had seen them), “I think it’s tough that we have to wait all evening without getting any numbers, then you have them dropped on you like a bombshell.”

Thorsen had only moments to file a story before her deadline. The Leader was probably in a similar predicament. Perhaps this week, with a bit more time to work with, they can ask Wagner what the problem was. Arnold Patch is on the case, but apparently Wagner isn’t answering their calls –  he was ignoring the phone on Tuesday night as well. Two county council members aren’t too happy, they report:

“I’m pretty angry about it.” [1st district councilman Don] Bickowski said Tuesday.

Also:

“I am very disappointed in the delay from the election judges,” [2nd district councilwoman Renee] Reuter said. “Jefferson County should be ashamed.”

Harsh words from the council. I’m sure we will hear more about this; Wagner can’t keep dodging the questions. He’s up for re-election in 2014, and potential challengers might be gaining inspiration – and a campaign issue – as we speak.

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One Response to “Vote Count Problems in JeffCo”

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  1. When Will We Know? | Jefferson County Penknife - April 2, 2013

    […] from here in JeffCo to be reported tonight. Recall that back in November, no results were released until about 10:45 pm, when full results were revealed all at once. The County Clerk, Wes Wagner, received much criticism […]

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