Election officials in Florida are continuing their count of paper ballots for the 2012 presidential election and vow to continue the process “until every vote is accurately counted and hell freezes over.”
The worst situation appears to be in Miami-Dade County, where elections supervisor Penelope Townsley has barricaded herself in her home with 21,500 uncounted absentee ballots, vowing not to come out “until someone gets me a calculator.”
The trouble started on Wednesday morning when a gust of wind blew an estimated 50,000 ballots out of Townsley’s office window. Then, during the tedious process of gathering those ballots, missing ballots from the 2000 presidential election, complete with precariously dangling chads, were discovered on the election department’s grounds.
One election official, who asked not to be identified for fear of being laughed at, said the 2000 election chad-ballots were found “in substantial numbers, enough to put Al Gore in the White House.”
On Thursday, after all of the wind-blown ballots had been gathered, Townsley’s count of the ballots was almost complete when someone distracted her and she had to start all over again.
“Then someone reminded her that if the results were less than 0.5% of the vote, state law would require her to count them a third time. That’s when Penelope cracked. She loaded the absentee ballots into her car and left the office” an Elections Department employee said.
Florida’s Republican Governor Rick Scott, whom many blame for the latest election fiasco, vowed not to give in to Townsley’s demands for a calculator, although he admitted that “electronics may be an idea whose time has come in the state of Florida.”
On a brighter note, Florida election officials did say that, as of Thursday afternoon, 8.3 million votes had been counted elsewhere in the state, and “Harry Truman holds a 46,000 vote lead over Dewey, and Huey and Louie are not far behind.”