The big day is less than 24 hours away, and the State Board of Elections is looking to make sure all ballot-counting goes smoothly and fairly. As part of those efforts, week, Maryland will become the first-ever state to audit all votes submitted in the general election.
As reported by WBAL on Thursday, Boston-based company Clear Ballot will be carrying out the audit and comparing its results with the state after all the votes have been certified. The additional review by a private firm may help alleviate concerns about fairness at polling places and in ballot-counting in elections.
In April, the state stepped in and decertified the results of the Democratic mayoral primary here in Baltimore after they found more than 1,600 ballot had been handled improperly. The results were eventually recertified and Catherine Pugh was re-declared the winner, but it left a mark on the primary election.
Additionally, concerns about election-rigging have surfaced from none other than the Republican presidential candidate himself, Donald J. Trump. Those worries have been disseminated by his ardent supporters. Trump infamously said last month that he would only agree the election hadn’t been rigged if he won.
There’s little to be done about that, but at least in Maryland, he won’t have much of a leg to stand on if he’s speaking about the ballot-counting process.
Larry Moore, CEO of Clear Ballot, told WBAL Radio that his company will get scanned copies from all 24 of Maryland’s counties of every submitted ballot from early voting and Election Day. They’re planning to start reviewing them on Thursday and finish on Monday, and will then publish their results to compare with the state after all results have been certified on Nov. 18.
“This really makes this an absolutely historic audit in the field of Democratic elections,” Moore said.