Three elections workers in the state's most populous county conspired to avoid a more thorough recount of ballots in the 2004 presidential election, a prosecutor told jurors during opening statements Thursday.
"The evidence will show that this recount was rigged, maybe not for political reasons, but rigged nonetheless," Prosecutor Kevin Baxter said. "They did this so they could spend a day rather than weeks or months" on the recount, he said. (. . .)
t's unlikely another recount would be ordered because of the court case, which voting rights advocates have used as an example of flaws with the state's recount laws. There were allegations in several counties of similar presorting of ballots for the recounts that state law says are to be random.
Baxter said testimony will show that the three workers secretly chose sample precincts for the December 2004 recount that did not have questionable results to ensure the tally from the sample matched a previous vote count. Sample precincts were to be selected randomly before witnesses.
When the results matched, the workers were allowed to recount the rest of the county's ballots by machine, avoiding a full hand recount that would have been more lengthy and expensive, he said.
The article goes to great lengths to point out that this probably didn't affect the outcome of the election. But isn't it bad enough that people can't even trust their votes to count?