Something's rotten in the state of Denmark

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Another recount in Washington?

The machine recount, mandated by law in Washington State for tight margin elections, has resulted in Dino Rossi's margin falling from 261 to 42 votes.

Yes, that's 42 votes out of 3 million cast.

Christine Gregoire's campaign is talking about a recount. My first reaction was, c'mon, you can't just keep demanding recounts until you get a result you like. Concede, give it up.

Except here's the thing: machines recounted the votes that they counted the first time, and that wound up with a change in 200 votes. So much for machines being error-free.

Hand recounts -- however costly they are -- provide a result people in which people can feel confident. Especially when the machine recount results in a 200 vote difference from the first machine count. We haven't had a hand recount yet.

(Did I mention that this story should, once again, emphasize the importance of having a paper trail?)

That said, when Christine Gregoire's campaign talks about only aiming their efforts to a few counties, I start to cringe. However much more money it might mean, I think that if there are going to be hand recounts, they ought to be statewide, and not just favoring the pick-and-choose districts that might favor a particular candidate. If you're going to recount King County, then recount the counties in the conservative eastern part of the state, too.