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422 frivolous challenges in Renville County

OLIVIA -- Renville County's recount showed a one-vote change at the end of the day, but amassed 422 frivolous ballot challenges in the process.

County Auditor Larry Jacobs said the recount showed only a one-vote change from the results previously canvassed. A voter had placed an 'X' through Mark Dayton's oval and colored the Tom Emmer oval on his ballot, which was read as an "over-vote'' by the computer.

When viewed by hand counters on Monday, the intent of the voter was judged to be a vote for Emmer, Jacobs said.

He said all of the 422 challenges were made by representatives of Tom Emmer. All of the challenges were for ballots that had some writing on them, including the large number of ballots with write-in candidates on them.

Jacobs said the challenged ballots were set aside and will be made available to the Minnesota Secretary of State's office if requested. He said there was no change in the actual vote count as a result of the challenges over the ballots with writing on them.

Jacobs said the representative for Emmer's office apologized for the large number of challenges, but said he had been instructed to challenge any ballots with writing on them.

Unofficial results in Renville County showed 2,759 votes for Emmer and 2,288 votes for Dayton.

Tom Cherveny

Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.

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