Elections results made official

URBANA — The results of the March 18 primary election in Champaign County were made official Tuesday when late-arriving absentee ballots and most provisional ballots were counted by Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten.

There were no changes in the Election Day winners as a result of the official count. The county's closest race — a 25-vote victory for Shana Jo Harrison over incumbent Ralph Langenheim in the county board District 7 Democratic primary — grew to 28 votes.

Overall, 77 ballots — 44 Republican and 33 Democratic — were added to the unofficial totals that had been retabulated last week. The Champaign County totals now go to the Illinois State Board of Elections, which later this month will certify each county's election results and release official statewide totals.

Champaign County's official totals show that 23,299 ballots were cast March 18, a 21.16 percent turnout that fell in line with other recent nonpresidential year primary totals. In 2010, the county's turnout was 19 percent; in 2006, it was 20.21 percent.

There were 14,683 Republican ballots cast and 8,547 Democratic ballots.

— In the most heated local race — the Democratic contest for the 103rd Illinois House seat being vacated by Rep. Naomi Jakobsson — Carol Ammons of Urbana ended up with 56.84 percent of the vote to Sam Rosenberg's 43.16 percent.

— In another top Democratic primary race, Champaign resident George Gollin added to his Champaign County victory margin in the 13th Congressional District race, drawing 3,386 votes to 2,696 for Ann Callis and 789 votes for David Green, also of Champaign. Overall, though, Callis won the race and will be the Democratic nominee for Congress against incumbent Rep. Rodney Davis.

— Davis' percentage in Champaign County improved slightly with the new ballots counted, although he still finished second in the county GOP primary to Urbana native Erika Harold. She had 6,348 votes to 2,519 for Davis and 183 for Michael Firsching of Moro.

— In the four-way Republican gubernatorial primary in Champaign County, state Sen. Kirk Dillard was first with 5,786 votes to 4,735 for Bruce Rauner — the GOP nominee — to 2,327 for state Sen. Bill Brady of Bloomington and 1,566 for state Treasurer Dan Rutherford.

The additional ballots counted Tuesday included 63 absentee ballots that arrived by mail after the election but were postmarked before Election Day, plus 14 provisional ballots that were deemed valid by the county clerk.

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Lance Dixon wrote on April 02, 2014 at 8:04 am

Why is the News-Gazette whitewashing Gordy Hulten's huge screw up in tallying the Democratic primary ballots? Thankfully, there were no overturned results but 92% of ballots in two races were not counted until days later. He claims that he knew about a mistake in the ballot design but didn't say anything about it when he reported totals on election night.

A real newspaper would expose this blunder rather than hide the mistakes of an elected official. The news-gazette is just another wing of the republican Good Ole Boys network. 

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

L.D. said:  "A real newspaper would expose this blunder rather than hide the mistakes of an elected official. The News-Gazette is just another wing of the republican Good Ole Boys network."


You really nailed that one, L.D. -- The News-Gazette has long been a fierce, trained attack dog when it has the chance to go after an elected Democratic official, but then their reporters and editorialists quickly turn into loving-little-puppy versions of  pampered-pet lap dogs when a Republican messes up -- apparently even when the mess-up is big enough to require every vote in Champaign's Democratic Primary to be re-tabulated!

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

The latest chapter in that long-running saga of lap-dog apologetics can be seen in this N-G editorial from Thursday, March 27th:
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http://www.news-gazette.com/opinion/editorials/2014-03-27/miscounting-vo...


 "(Mis)counting the votes"


[Excerpt:]


Mistakes that are easy to make can be hard to explain.

Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten has found himself in the embarrassing position of explaining how it is that his office followed the proper procedures for vote counting in the March 18 primary election but still must recount all the Democratic ballots to correct the mistakes that were made.

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

Unbelievable, isn't it?!  And that's just the first 2 sentences of the N-G editorial, "(Mis)counting the votes!"


I mean, consider first just that opening sentence, all by itself:


(1.)   Why does the Snooze Gazoo's editorialist open this PR apologia by talking about, "Mistakes that are easy to make?!"  How could one possibly know if what the Snooze has apparently decided to treat as "Gordy's Little Boo-Boo" is indeed a mistake that's easy to make?  Where's the evidence of it being an easy mistake to make?


For crying out loud, the "Incredible Hult" de-synchronized the paper ballot from its underlying electronic counterparts!  Why hasn't anyone in our ultra-lazy, asleep-at-the-wheel Champaign County media  interviewed a single person connected with the voting machine industry, to see if that's an easy mistake to make??! 

(Is it, "Too hard to find the phone number?"  Or is this yet another case of "Gordy won't give us any more interviews, if we start sneaking around his back and asking "inappropriate" questions like that, after he's already told us that it was an easy mistake to make!"?)


Let's suppose, for a moment, that (perhaps being naive) we took the Snooze Gazoo's word for it and assumed that this was indeed an easy mistake to make.  If so, then, wouldn't we have heard about many cases of county-wide recounts being required in jurisdictions all around the country due to de-synchronization issues between paper ballots and vote-counting software?  (Or as Sgt. Hulten likes to call it, "Too Much White-Space!")


It should strike at least some readers as rather strange that we aren't hearing about all kinds of other cases where this type of error has occurred, given that it's apparently such a simple error to make!  (Was it really just a simple matter of ballot-design aesthetics, that our hero, Gordy, just tended to like a touch too much of that nice "white space" on the ballot, and this is the first time that anyone's ever really preferred that much?  If so, that's kind of frightening, isn't it?  For example, how many other times has it been the case that someone used "Too Much White Space" and nobody happened to catch the mistake?!)


(2.)   Also, why does the Snooze Gazoo's editorialist think that the mistake can be hard to explain?  We've already heard about the de-synchronization issues and the "Too Much White Space" issues.  It shouldn't really be very hard to explain this a little more and reconcile the two explanations. Just tell us how these two descriptions go together, and give us a bit more explication of what actually happened.


 Unfortunately, it appears that there are many details being left out of the explanation of what actually happened, and the impression that's being given is that the News-Gazette really doesn't want to try to give more of an explanation...apparently,  because it might embarrass Gordy Hulten.

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

Indeed, when we move to the second sentence of the N-G editorial, that's what we hear about: the poor "embarrassing position" of Gordy Hulten.  It's almost as though the News-Gazette is worried more about Gordy Hulten, and his upcoming chances of getting re-elected, than it is about failing to inform the public of what's going on!  (Of course, it's always good for a newspaper to get its priorities straight, isn't it?!)

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

That second sentence of the editorial also runs smack into Problem #1 we faced earlier, with the first sentence in the editorial:

Problem #1 was, "How did you know that Hulten's error was an easy one to make?"


Problem #1 revisited, in the second sentence is, how do you know that Hulten's office "followed the proper procedures for vote counting in the March 18 primary election?"


In the absence of any evidence to the contrary, it appears that the answer to both of these questions must be, "Well, Gordy told us so!"

Political Observer wrote on April 05, 2014 at 9:04 pm

Maybe the News-Gazette should print a new motto on its editorial page every day, "In Gordy We Trust!"

alabaster jones 71 wrote on April 06, 2014 at 1:04 am
Profile Picture

Political Observer has long been a fierce, trained attack dog when it has the chance to go after an elected Republican official, but then he/she quickly turns into loving-little-puppy version of a pampered-pet lap dog when a Democrat messes up.

 

Long story short, yeah, N-G is a bunch of partisan hacks.  But, alas, you are one too.  If a Democrat was the county clerk, and this happened in a meaningless Republican precinct committeman primary instead of a meaningless Democratic precinct committeeman primary, you wouldn't say a word (or, more accurately, 20 consecutive posts) about it, now would you?  Unless it was to defend them, perhaps.

Political Observer wrote on April 06, 2014 at 2:04 am

Sometimes there's a URL that just says it all:

 (No, I really didn't make up any of the quotes below...They're really right from the link!)

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http://kingofthehill.wikia.com/wiki/Alabaster

"Alabaster Jones is a pimp who lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma."   [Snip]

"He drives a highly ornamented Duesenberg and wears expensive and stylish clothing."   [Snip]

"Alabaster had a small cameo as a pimp being beaten by Virtual Hank of the video game in the episode "Grand Theft Arlen".  "

-----------------------------------

May I compliment you on your very nice self-image and cartoon portrait, Mr. Jones?...And thank you, also, for your very deep insights, directly from that most wonderful show "King of the Hill" and the world of Fox Cartoonland!

I'm deeply sorry that you don't seem to care about good government or fair elections or political parties or perhaps even politics in general.  My advice is to please, please just skip over my posts...I don't intend them for someone like you (or indeed for any other cartoon characters) and I'm actually somewhat surprised that you seem to show up in this forum time and time again, seemingly to stalk me and attack me for posting, as though I have no right to express any opinions, other than things you've pre-cleared in advance and that you may find aesthetically pleasing to your cartoon-based world belief systems.

If you're a relative or a close friend of Gordy Hulten, I apologize if I've offended you in any way, but I'd like to remind you that he's a public figure, he's more or less a grown adult, he's apparently not a cartoon character (although he often may seem to behave as one), and he has quite a few friends (and a number of members of the media in his pocket) who can speak for him and try to defend him with substantive arguments, rather than just cartoon-like outbursts...

If you wouldn't mind a bit of friendly advice, it probably would be a good idea to stay away from Virtual Hank, as modern medical science warns that repeated concussions can cause permanent damage, and we sure wouldn't want the fine quality of your posts here to deteriorate any further.

I wish you a very pleasant day, sir.

alabaster jones 71 wrote on April 08, 2014 at 8:04 am
Profile Picture

This has got to be at least the third or fourth time you've posted that wikia link.  Of course, by your standards, that's a pretty low amount of times to ramble on about a dead horse.

I would take your advice about skipping over your posts, but at this point, I'm probably the only soul that reads even a couple sentences of any of them, and the thought of you spending all this time composing and typing out these rants only for them to be read by no eyes is quite sad and pitiful to me. 

So, as long as you keep stalking Rodney Davis, Gordy Hulten, and other local politicians, and assigning them childish nicknames and hyping up trivial "controversies"....I will keep stalking you, and pointing out your hypocrisy every chance that I get.  And, for that, you should be grateful that somebody pays you any attention at all, on this little cesspool of insignificant bloviation that we call the News Gazette comment sections.