Recount doesn’t change table game vote in Kanawha County

By Scott Finn  

Fourteen more uncounted ballots were discovered this morning during a partial recount of the Kanawha County table games election – but they didn’t change the result.  

The “No” side gained four votes in the recount, meaning that table games passed by just 339 votes out of more than 46,000 votes cast.  

This isn’t the first time uncounted ballots have turned up. Several hundred were found in the week between election day and the canvass, when the vote was certified.  

Table Games opponents paid for the recount, but they could only afford to recount 44 of the county’s 175 precincts. Mia Moran Cooper used to run the state’s program for problem gamblers and is now a gambling opponent. She says her side is looking at a possible legal challenge to the election.   

“It’s a travesty, really, and a mockery of our system,” she said. “We don’t know how many missing ballots are still out there.”  

Kanawha County Commissioner Kent Carper defended the election process. Carper is a vocal supporter of table games.  

“I don’t know why they are shocked. They found 14 ballots in one precinct,” Carper said. “It was an excellent example of how the system can work.”  

Secretary of State Betty Ireland says that her office will conduct an audit of the Kanawha County election. She says the purpose is to learn how to make future elections better and will not change the result.

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