Croker Sack

"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard." — Henry Louis Mencken (1880-1956)

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Logan's own words -- "I don't know...anything...."

Dean Logan doesn't know anything about the legal duty of the canvassing board.

At page 124 of his deposition, he responded to a question which asked whether he would have certified the election returns had he known about the hundreds of illegal votes cast by felons who were disqualified from voting.

His answer revealed that he still believes what he said to the King County Council on March 14, i.e., that the canvassing board has no choice but to certify the returns by the deadline.

Okay. I guess, first, my understanding is that certification of the election is not optional on the part of the canvassing board, that it’s statutorily required. And that, in fact, that the canvassing board would be guilty of a misdemeanor if we failed to do that. Secondly, speaking for myself as one of the three members of the canvassing board, I don’t know of any process of the canvassing on [sic: “or”?] certification process that would give me the authority to – to do anything beyond that.”

It is true that there is a deadline, but it is also true that the canvassing board must first verify that the abstract of votes prepared by the county elections office is "a full, true, and correct representation of the votes cast" before certifying that it is so.

It is true that failure to certify the returns is a crime, but only if the returns can be known "with reasonable certainty."

The language of the pertinent statute isn't at all unclear:

The county canvassing board shall proceed to verify the results from the precincts and the absentee ballots. The board shall execute a certificate of the results of the primary or election signed by all members of the board or their designees. Failure to certify the returns, if they can be ascertained with reasonable certainty, is a crime under RCW 29A.84.720. (Emphasis added.)

First, verify that the results reported by Logan's personnel are true, then certify that they are true -- if the truth can be ascertained with reasonable certainty.

It's little wonder that things are such a mess under Logan's leadership. So much of what he knows is simply not correct.

It's also apparent that Logan would never have noticed the deficiency in the so-called certificate signed by the canvassing board, since he did not (and still does not) understand that it is the job of the canvassing board to determine how many legitimate votes were cast for each candidate and issue on the ballot.


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