Oklahoma Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax: Late Results Expected from Provisional Ballots

Article excerpt

In light of polling problems already reported elsewhere in the country, Oklahoma Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax said Monday he knows exactly what the odds are of having a final tally of ballots by the end of Tuesday.

Zero percent, he said.

But that's only because provisional ballots cannot legally be counted until Friday, he said. In the case of other ballots cast in advance of the election - the absentee voters who showed up at county offices early or those who mailed them in, for example - the counting begins as soon as the polls open Tuesday.

Provisional ballots are cast by voters who might not normally appear to qualify for a ballot, Ziriax said. That includes someone who doesn't present some form of identification, for example, who must sign an affidavit. By the end of the week, those affidavits are checked against voter registration records and cleared to be counted.

Ziriax was unable to immediately tell how many provisional ballots were cast in the previous presidential election, but he said it was a small portion of the total. …