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Romney votes in Colorado might count for Obama? RNC, officials on computer glitch

The Republican National Committee has sent a letter to six states, including Colorado, warning of "voting machine errors" that could cause a vote intended for Mitt Romney to go to Barack Obama. But according to several Colorado election officials, there's no reason to be concerned -- and they don't believe any votes have gone to the wrong candidate.

Late yesterday afternoon, the RNC sent Colorado reporters a press release highlighting its requests to correct voting machine irregularities in six states. Officials were calling for immediate action regarding "voting machines populating a vote for Barack Obama when the voter desired to cast a ballot for Mitt Romney," the press release said.

The attached letter, from John Phillippe, chief counsel, for the RNC, is addressed to Colorado's Republican Secretary of State, Scott Gessler, as well as officials from Nevada, Ohio, Kansas, North Carolina and Missouri.

It says in part:

I write regarding the media and citizen reports of voting machine errors taking place in your states. I understand that, in a significant number of cases, voting machines in your states have populated a vote for Barack Obama when a voter cast his or her ballot for Mitt Romney. I further understand that the causes of this problem are varied, and include miscalibration and hyper-sensitivity of the machines.
The letter, on view below, calls for officials to re-calibrate all voting machines on the morning of election day or the day before, and also requests they make arrangements for additional technicians in the case of increased problems with calibration. The letter also asks that officials prominently post signs reminding voters to double-check that the machines are properly recording their submissions.

An RNC spokesman says the main concern in Colorado stems from a Grand Junction Daily Sentinel piece from last Tuesday in which a voter complained that the machine was recording his vote incorrectly.

The RNC official tells us that this article is the primary source regarding Colorado problems. The issue is considered to be ongoing.

However, Sheila Reiner, the clerk and recorder for Mesa County, where this issue took place, says the situation is much ado about nothing. She adds that she remains very confident in the technology. Additionally, she says that every voter has been able to correctly vote for their candidate of choice.

"There was one instance with a voter not being happy with the way the touch screen responded to his finger," says Reiner, referring to the case covered by the Daily Sentinel.

Continue for more on the case in Mesa County and response from Scott Gessler's office.

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Sam Levin
Contact: Sam Levin

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