GEC smoothing-out handful of voting concerns
Friday, November 7th 2014, 4:13 PM ChST
Guam - While the results have been tabulated from the general election just a few days ago, the Guam Election Commission still has a few more weeks until they actually close the books on Decision 2014. While most of Super Tuesday went over smoothly, the Guam Election Commission still had its share of administrative complaints from voters.
"We received eight written complaints, so what we will do is we will respond to them," said Maria Pangelinan, executive director for the GEC. The agency received more than a handful of complaints which include voter challenges, the need for more voting booths, and locked ballot boxes. Pangelinan says before the results can be certified, the GEC needs to respond to every single complaint, saying, "It's very important because in addressing these complaints, it makes for a better next election."
She does add that compared to the 2012 and 2010 elections, the amount of complaints received this week is far less. But it's not just the complaints that are holding back the certification of results as the GEC has to wait ten business days for more ballots to come in such as absentee ballots from off-island. "We have 10 working days to receive off-island ballots, so that would give us up to November 19 so we will continue to check the post office 5-6 days a week making sure we pick up ballots. And then in the meantime, we continue to track, the 151 ballots that are still pending," she said.
Along with the 151 off-island absentee ballots, the GEC also has another 111 absentee ballots from homebound service and UOCAVA voters. She adds 218 provisional ballots, which are for voters whose names were not on the voter registry on election day, need to be accounted for as well. She added, "For provisional ballots, what we need to do is give the provisional voter is 7 days to rectify their registration."
Once all the ballots are tabulated, then the GEC will make a determination whether a recount is necessary for the number 15 and 16 spots for the legislative race. As we reported, the GEC was looking into what is required should the difference between two candidates is two percent or less. The unofficial results put the difference between the number 15 and 16 candidates at 344 votes apart. The GEC is set to meet on November 20 to certify the results.
In the meantime, the GEC will also use this 10-day period to count all 902 write-in votes. Along with party representatives, the count will begin on Monday morning.