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Official: GOP Ballots Mislabeled As Democratic On Screens

Matt Rourke

Election officials in one northeastern Pennsylvania county say a “coding error" is causing Republican primary ballots to be mislabeled as Democratic ballots on the ballot marking devices at polling places.

Luzerne County elections director Bob Morgan says an error during vendor programming of the device is causing GOP primary ballots throughout the county to have “an error in the header when displayed on the viewing screen."

Moran said in a statement that the device has been thoroughly tested and the error “appears on the screen only."

“The ballot prints correctly with the Republican header and contains only Republican primary race results," he said.

But Republicans who don't want to use the machines can also vote with a provisional ballot that will be later reviewed by the Luzerne County Elections Board, he said.

The issue caused a flood of complaints as soon as polls opened at 7 a.m. Tuesday. They will be open until 8 p.m.

Morgan said a sign is being placed in every polling place and posted on the county website informing people about the situation.

“We wish to assure all voters that their ballots will be correctly counted," he said.

In Lancaster County, meanwhile, elections officials said a printing error meant that more than half of all mail-in ballots would have to be counted by hand, significantly delaying final results.

The Lancaster County Board of Elections said in a statement that about 14,000 multi-sheet ballots were printed in the wrong order. Since county ballot scanners used to count the votes were set up to scan the pages in sequence, they would be unable to read the out-of-order ballots, necessitating a hand-count, officials said.

LNP newspaper reported that earlier in the month, about 2,700 voters were alerted that some had received incorrect voting instructions telling them that they didn't need to pay postage, and 100 other voters received incorrect return envelopes intended for other voters.

Associated Press