Concerns Surface About Voter Disenfranchisement In Washington State

Nov 6, 2012

Washington state election officials want campaign workers and political parties to provide information about ballots they’ve collected on behalf of voters. King County Republicans have offered to shuttle ballots to official drop boxes by mini-van.

Katie O’Brien with the Secretary of State’s office says she has grave concerns about parties and campaigns asking voters to hand over sealed ballots.

“We want people to have confidence that their ballot is not going to be tampered with, or that someone else might not try to either change their votes or just view their votes. The ballot is supposed to be a secret ballot.”

O’Brien is also concerned the ballots might not get to official drop-box locations by the eight o’clock deadline.

State elections officials want parties and campaigns to send them the names and addresses of voters they collected ballots for, among other things.

State Republican Party chair Kirby Wilbur says the party does not plan to turn any lists over to the state, and that there’s not legal grounds to do so.

A spokesman for the state Democratic party says the party does not have an organized effort to collect ballots.

Copyright 2012 KUOW