The Corner

Washington Gubernatorial Election

The Republican contest of last November’s State of Washington governor’s election goes to trial on Monday.Republican candidate Dino Rossi had initially “won” the election by a margin of 261 votes–out of 2.9 million cast–over Democrat Christine Gregoire. But then thousands of ballots began showing up in the oddest places (most of these odd places happened to be in Democrat strongholds) and after a machine recount, Rossi’s lead narrowed to just 42 votes. More ballots kept showing up. A hand recount followed and Gregoire prevailed by 129 votes

The GOP’s contest petition maintains that the election should be set aside and a new one conducted because of alleged errors, omissions and misconduct on the part of election officials, including the counting of numerous illegal votes,that made it impossible to determine who won the election. Local media has uncovered scores of votes cast by the dead, illegal aliens and felons.The petition also cites equal protection arguments based on a lack of uniform vote counting standards from county to county.

Nonetheless,the Republicans have a tough job. Unless they can establish outright fraud, the election won’t be overturned at the trial court level unless Petitioners can establish that subtraction of the invalid votes would drain enough votes from Gregoire’s total that Rossi ends up with the higher total.They will probably try to do this by statistical modeling– but it’s unclear whether that will satisfy petitioner’s burden under state law.

This will be very interesting. Expect the losing party to take it to the Washington state supreme court.


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