Election Day 2020 fails to offer timely winner
Election Day is in the rearview mirror, but the results are still a ways down the road, with Key states Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada and Wisconsin still too close to call.
Voter turnout in person in Franklin County on Election Day was nearly 59 percent, with 59,442 voters casting ballots in 73 precincts.
In the Presidential election, 82 percent (48,912) of county voters filled in the Trump/Pence circle, with nearly 16 percent (9,482) voting for Biden/Harris.
In the statewide race locally, Republican Heather Heidelbaugh was the top vote-getter for attorney general, and as of Wednesday morning, she was leading Democratic incumbent Josh Shapiro.
In the auditor general race, Republican Timothy DeFoor handily beat Democratic challenger Nina Ahmad locally, and appeared to be keeping that lead statewide Wednesday morning.
In other races, 13th Congressional District’s John Joyce was declared the winner in unofficial results, as was 33rd Senatorial District’s Doug Mastriano.
Incumbents Jesse Topper, Rob Hershey, Rob Kauffman and Paul Schemel also kept their seats.
In St. Thomas Township, the ballot included a liquor referendum to allow the sale of alcohol, which was overwhelmingly approved, meaning with some maneuvering Rutter’s on Route 30 could start selling beer.
Under the Pennsylvania Liquor Code, changing the liquor sale status requires a referendum on the election ballot. Greene and Southampton townships were successful with referendums on the May primary ballot.
According to PLCB officials, even with successful referendums, it doesn’t mean alcoholic beverage sales are imminent.
By law, each county has a limited number of liquor licenses — a number determined by population, with one liquor license available for every 3,000 people.
When a municipality goes “wet,” the PLCB doesn’t issue additional liquor licenses if that county is at or over its retail liquor license quota. In that scenario, a license would have to be acquired from an existing license from elsewhere in the county.
A municipality may transfer in a license from another part of the county, however that would require approval from township officials.
Meanwhile in the county mail-in ballots are still being tallied Wednesday and the process could take until the end of the week.
“We’ll be counting ballots all day Wednesday into Thursday or as long as it takes to count mail-in ballots and then those results will get added into our Election Day totals,” said Jean Byers, deputy chief clerk and director of elections. “We have also been ordered to count ballots received up through Friday, Nov. 6, which have a postmark of Nov. 3 or earlier or even an unreadable postmark date.”
In Maryland, Biden was declared the winner with 63.6 percent of the vote over Trump’s 34.7 percent.
In Washington County 6th Congressional District, Republican Neil Parrot handily won, with 34,284 votes over Democratic opponent David Trone’s 20,285 votes.
In the Hagerstown Mayor’s race, Democrat Emily Keller shut out Republican Michael Barnes with 7,180 votes to Barnes’ 4,612.
Hagerstown City Council’s top five vote-getters were Tiara Burnett, Kristin Aleshire, Tekesha Martzinz, Shelley McIntire and Bob Bruchey.
On the Washington County Board of Education, the top four vote-getters were Melissa Williams, Stan Stouffer, Pieter Bickford and April Zentmeyer.
Statewide, the Maryland Board of Elections announced Tuesday night that election results from several jurisdictions will not be complete.
In a statement released by officials,
“Processing results includes transferring data from the thumb drives from the scanners to the central voting system database.
This process requires the user to manually confirm any precinct that does not have results before moving to the next precinct. For example, a voter lives in precinct 1-1 which is located in Glen Burnie, northern Anne Arundel County.
While this voter can vote at any vote center in Anne Arundel County, the voter is unlikely to vote at a vote center in southern Anne Arundel County.
If no voter from precinct 1-1 votes at a vote center in southern Anne Arundel, the southern Anne Arundel vote center will not have any ballots from precinct 1-1. When the results are processed, the user must manually confirm that there are no ballots from precinct 1-1 from this vote center. The data transfer and confirmation process is taking about 8-10 minutes for each thumb drive. This impacts those jurisdictions with the most thumb drives.
The State Board is working on a solution with the voting system vendor and the affected local boards of elections.”
State election officials said they expect the board to provide an update Wednesday.
This story will be updated as results are verified.