The smooth certifications contrast with two years ago, when the mostly ceremonial bipartisan boards took on extra importance when Wayne County and later the state board all but refused to certify the results over a few irregularities.
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Few technical errors were reported statewide this year and were fixed before they could affect voters’ ability to vote, Michigan Secretary of State spokesman Jake Rollow told reporters on Election Day.
In Wayne County, the four-member recruiting board voted unanimously on Tuesday to certify the election, amid chants of “Count my vote” and comments from the public urging them to certify.
A total of 92 to 100 percent of Wayne County county election results were reconciled or declared when there was a mismatch between the number of votes cast and the number of voters in the ePollbook, according to a staff report.
The mismatch could be because voters messed up their ballots and left the district without actually voting, or because they received and cast a ballot for another district and had their vote counted in that other district, election director Greg Mahar said Tuesday.
A handful of others objected to the certification based on claims of “abnormalities”, even though there was no credible evidence of irregularities affecting the election results. Some demanded a “full forensic audit” — a term commonly used by supporters of former President Donald Trump who believed without credible evidence that the 2020 election was stolen.
Final certification is up to the Board of State Canvassers. Tony Daunt, a Republican member who serves as chairman of the board of directors, has indicated this year that he intends to certify the election.
“This is a very ministerial job,” Daunt said last month. “I was never a good math student, but I think I can handle the addition of 83 counties and determine that these are the results.”
If the state board becomes deadlocked on the certification of the election results, the issue would be taken to the Michigan Supreme Court.
This year may be one of the last in which the recruiting boards hold that much power.
Voters approved Bill 2 in November, which would require those boards to certify election results only based on the number of votes cast by election officials.
The proposal also eliminates the state legislature’s right to determine winners of races in the event of a tie, requiring a “draw” instead.
Under Proposal 2, the Board of State Canvassers will be the sole entity overseeing a post-certification recount, and the Board’s certification is final unless a recount or court order changes the outcome.