Klein: More errors in county's primary results

Klein: More errors in county's primary results

URBANA — New accusations of errors in the official results of the March 18 primary election in Champaign County have been leveled by Al Klein, head of the county's Democratic Party.

But County Clerk Gordy Hulten, a Republican, says he is confident in the results and accuses Klein of "playing politics."

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The new claims are unrelated to the complete retabulation of all Democratic votes cast in the county last month after irregularities were found in the unofficial election results. The retabulation was ordered by Hulten after Klein uncovered an unusual number of undervotes in some uncontested races on the Democratic ballot.

The county's results were made official on April 1, when provisional ballots and late-arriving absentee votes were included in the count.

The state Board of Elections is expected to include those numbers Friday when it makes official the vote totals from all election authorities in the state.

Klein, however, said he would ask the Board of Elections to "refrain from certifying the flawed results from Champaign County and including them in district totals until the county's ballot processing issues have been identified and resolved."

The board's executive director, Robert Borgsmiller, said it's unlikely the board would act on Klein's request.

"Unless there is something that would impact a race that we're responsible for, and unless we get a court order that tells us not to do something, I'm not saying that we ignore what (Klein) is saying; we might get 102 county chairmen from one party or the other that says we shouldn't certify those results," Borgsmiller said. "There's got to be more to it than just that."

In his new allegations, Klein said he found a number of inconsistencies in the reporting of the official election results in uncontested races, both on the Democratic and Republican sides, as well as the labeling of a Republican appellate court justice candidate, Lisa Holder White, as a candidate for circuit court.

In that case, Hulten said he used coding provided by the state Board of Elections.

"When we code now as part of this new software we used for this election, we code the offices with an office ID number. They're indexed in a database that the state Board of Elections provides for us for a particular office," Hulten said.

The other problematic results include an issue in the Cunningham 14 precinct in Urbana (which votes at Clark-Lindsey Village), where the official results state that 243 Democratic votes were cast, but where there were 244 votes in the precinct committeeman race. There was a similar issue in the city of Champaign 34 precinct, where 229 Republican ballots were cast but there were 243 votes in the precinct committeeman contest.

Asked how he would explain the disparity, Hulten said he couldn't "without doing a couple weeks worth of diagnostics on it (but) that is probably the result of merging in the result of the retabulated ballots with the Election Day ballots."

He also said there could be an inconsistency "because sometimes the machines will count things one way and sometimes they'll count them another way."

Still, Hulten said he believed the county's election results were accurate.

"We have counted every ballot that was cast in Champaign County. We did so accurately. We did so using the machines. In some cases, we did so twice," he said. "We're confident in the results. We reported them to the state Board of Elections and they're official.

"I understand that the Democratic Party is going to want to play politics with this. They're going to try to make an issue out of this for a long time, I suspect. But we have reported our official results for Champaign County to the state Board of Elections and they're official and we're confident in them."

Asked if he had confidence in the tabulating machines and software used by the clerk's office, Hulten said, "There were a number of cases where the Democratic Party chairman or a candidate asked us to do a handcount and compare it to a machine count and compare it to the report, and everything matched. Every single time."

Klein said he is continuing his search for a candidate to oppose Hulten in the November general election. The Democratic Party still can slate a candidate either this month or next and then help him or her get some 280 signatures on petitions of candidacy.

"This is not going to be a routine candidacy. This is different," Klein said. "The search is not closed yet. We want the best possible candidate."

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chambana visionary wrote on April 16, 2014 at 7:04 am

Al Klein isn't gonna do jack crap except media pimp. Between Klein and the Young Dems, we see nothing but the legion of suck. Talk about a band of naval-gazing thumb-suckers over-endowed with fecklessness. 


Who are they gonna recruit? Don Gerard? Maybe Big Debbie can come out of his closet and out his name on the ballot. 


No matter what they do, they will pick out some malformed polyp out of the colon of Urbana's body politic who will campaign on the latest pinko ideas popular at Strawberry Fields. 

Sid Saltfork wrote on April 16, 2014 at 9:04 am

How do you really feel about it?  Don't hold back.  

You have hit a new low in comments to an article.  Rush Limbaugh could not do any better.  The only thing lacking is a vulgar illustration. 

Political Observer wrote on April 18, 2014 at 2:04 am

Take it easy on him, Sid...These latest revelations are not very good news for those who support the Bambenek, Bussell and Hulten dirty-trickster trio, and so I can see why Mr. Bussell and his many friends might not be feeling too good just now, as more and more evidence shows that the Champaign Clowney Clerk can't count...

And the thing is, of course, that the actual state of affairs on the issue is much, much more serious than the framing of this article might suggest.  A much more detailed discussion of the problems in the profoundly-fictitious (but supposedly "100% accurate") Hulten-certified data can be found at:


(An advantage in taking a look at this more precise and detailed description of the errors is that there are a total of 7 errors listed vs. just the 3 examples the article above mentions, there are descriptions of how the errors involve logical and/or mathematically impossible contradictions, and there are also links provided that enable the reader to see the actual errors right in the election results database.)

DMC wrote on April 16, 2014 at 8:04 am

Why doesn't Al run?

yates wrote on April 16, 2014 at 9:04 am

Is somebody confusing Rush with Polosi and Ried. Last I knew Rush made no policy votes to fundamentally change America.

Sid Saltfork wrote on April 21, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Yates; it is Reid, Harry Reid.  Also, it is not Pol..... oh why bother......   Put FOX News on caption when you watch it.

sweet caroline wrote on April 16, 2014 at 10:04 am

Who's Big Debbie?

ROB McCOLLEY wrote on April 16, 2014 at 6:04 pm
Profile Picture

I answered this question, and my answer disappeared. That's bizarre, because it was a straightforward and factual answer. AND because the initial post has obviously passed muster from the N-G censors.

pattsi wrote on April 17, 2014 at 9:04 am

Oh, darn, I missed the response so why not post it again?

ROB McCOLLEY wrote on April 17, 2014 at 10:04 am
Profile Picture

"Debbie" is the name (self-professed) of a local transsexual (transvestite, cross-dresser ...) which s/he uses when in costume or -- if you prefer -- when s/he's dressed as her true self.


Debbie has been a fixture of the Champaign bar scene for a very long time.

sweet caroline wrote on April 18, 2014 at 7:04 pm

Thanks, Rob.  Guess I'm out of the loop!  I've never heard of Debbie. 

johnny wrote on April 17, 2014 at 11:04 pm

Big Debbie is a local blogger with absolutely no connection to Debbie the aforementioned transvestite.

Glock21 wrote on April 16, 2014 at 6:04 pm

I was shocked and appalled when I learned that our county clerk joined the illuminati and became engaged in massive conspiracies that are so sinister that no proof will ever be found... in spite of Al Klein's heroic attempts to shed light on the darkness that lurks's in the county offices when they're closed for the night and the lights aren't on.


This is clearly not petty local party politics and definitively malicious wrongdoing, so insiduous that the lack of evidence *is* the evidence, and if you disagree, you're probably working for "Them!"


I weep for those voiceless victims whose cries for justice are ignored just because Al Klein made them up. This tyrannical plot will continue until a county clerk has a "D" next to his name. Because if the local Democratic Party taught us anything with the Auditor's office, doing a political office job is far less important than winning it.


Snark, free of charge.

Franklin wrote on April 16, 2014 at 10:04 pm

The current Republican auditor, John Farney, is but a political hack who wanted to be county clerk so badly he cried when he didn't get appointed. So, if, as you say, skill doing the job matters, why doesn't the Honorable (county office interchangeable) Mr.Farney demonstrate his brilliant numeracy and skill auditing numbers to discern these ballot discrepancies? Or is he simply another incompetent partisan hack on the job like Gordo Hulten.

Glock21 wrote on April 17, 2014 at 12:04 am

It was, as I noted, mostly snark. Snark over the pot calling the kettle black and it coming on the heals of some fairly conspiratorial rumors running a bit wild earlier this week.


I agree that the political side of these offices can be downright silly on the Republican side too, but they are still political offices. As an independent, I've appreciated local dems and repubs who take their offices seriously in spite of the politics in the past and present. I think it's great if the local parties can recruit even better alternatives for voters to decide from. That's better for everybody. But the recruitment tractics should be scrutinized if it comes off petty or absurd.


If Habeeb Habeeb was spreading outlandish rumors to unseat Julia Rietz I would gladly focus my snark in his direction too. As far as Farney goes, I think I argued with him or just disagreed with him on the blogs long before he got into the auditor seat... but, do you have any job related complaints about his performance thus far? Compared to nonfeasance, it's hard to say he's doing worse, but I'll be all ears if the democratic party thinks they have somebody who can do better. We both obviously agree that it should be more about doing the best job for the people than political patronage. I think most voters agree with that sentiment too.


And if I upset anybody else, it was snark, not meant to be taken too seriously on an otherwise serious subject. There was no ill will intended, just a criticism.

Franklin wrote on April 17, 2014 at 4:04 pm

If you're all ears, clearly you're tone deaf. The Democrats did put forward a qualified professional auditor candidate, one who was endorsed by both this newspaper and the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce. Alas, Republican patronage won the day.

Illini Libertarian wrote on April 16, 2014 at 8:04 pm

Hulten should have asked "What difference does it make?"  Democrats seem to be accepting of responses like that.

ericbussell wrote on April 17, 2014 at 6:04 am

I enjoyed reading Glock's snark as I have been following the Gordy "The Boogeyman" saga for years.