Hanging chads, dimpled chads, pregnant chads, swinging chads --
Americans have heard the lingo, but relatively few have actually seen
the chads, or the ballots, first-hand.
David Anderson, a Palm Beach County resident and participant in the
hand recount process there, is one of those few. In his column today in
WorldNetDaily, he provides an extensive and detailed account of his day
behind the scenes.
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On Friday, Nov. 17, Anderson volunteered to help count ballots
manually. Given a stack of absentee ballots, he came across three that
had carefully cut tape either covering a punched-out hole in the ballot
or holding a chad in place. Anderson says he questioned the
all-Democrat canvassing board about the phenomenon, which told him "we
were counting the absentee ballots and most likely the voter punched the
wrong hole and used tape to put the chad back in and vote for another.
The voter was not in a polling place to receive another ballot to use.
We bought [this] explanation and continued. Soon we found a third (in
about a span of 12 ballots)."
Anderson was also concerned about so-called dimpled chads: "We
noticed these mainly on ballots that did not have any candidate
selected. Some dimples were so slight that they were hardly noticeable.
I have large doubts that anyone can discern the intent of the voter for
these ballots. All of the ballots that had the dimpled chads for the
presidential column were clearly punched for the other less important
races, so I feel the voter did not want to vote for any presidential
candidate (we did have several ballots like that)."
If Gore wins, says the volunteer vote counter, it will be because of
"the partisan voting of the canvassing board on the dimpled chads,"
Anderson writes. However, he adds, "I did get the feeling that at least
Judge Burton and Theresa LePore (of the Palm Beach County canvassing
board) wanted to do the right thing."