As Secretary of State, I am the only automatic member of the electoral commission, since the other members need to be appointed by the King.
So far three of the members have begun validating ballots and 35 have been approved by all three of these members, and 98 by two of the members, for a total of 133 of the 136 ballots (one was marked as invalid and Txec will mark it as valid soon now that the email record was corrected).
Two Ballots have been marked as invalid by Txec Róibeard dal Nordselva and these two ballots are the only obstacles I see so far against a swift validation by at least three of the four members of the electoral commission.
I thought I would use this space in Beric’ht Talossan to explain that is the hold up with these two specific ballots, made by No’ach Ventrux and Iason Taiwos, in the hope that the citizens of Talossa will understand the difficult choices we have to make as a members of the electoral commission.
Fortunately, both of these votes were public so I am able to talk about them in some details.
Let’s start with No’ach. He voted “Whatever” on 47RZ39 and I interpreted that vote as an abstention considering that in the Cosa, any vote that cannot be interpreted as a Per or a Contra is an abstention. No such law however exists for referendum as far as I know, making my decision shaky at best.
I decided not to validate that ballot, leaving it to the judges to decide so I could make my decision with some sort of judicial clarity.
Txec explained that according to him, a vote of “whatever” is simply a non-vote and that as such, No’ach shouldn’t have noted to have voted on that referendum.
We discussed that interpretation and was convinced by his argument, and yet, in the meantime, Ian Tamoran validated the ballot, which mean we will probably need a discussion when all of the electoral commission members will have taken their posts, especially since during the last election, Litz Cjantscheir was the member who found a way to break such a conflict and I am inclined to wait for her wisdom.
It’s odd how such a tiny detail can have the best minds of the Kingdom (and the Secretary of State) scratching their head…
As for Iason Taiwos, the problem is a little more complex.
Iason tried to vote with the database system and even though he entered the right PSC, but the dash in the middle was somehow encoded differently in his email program so that when the script compared the PSC, it failed the test.
I contacted him but in the meantime, he voted publicly on Wittenberg, but this time, abstaining on all of the referendums instead of sending in his individual votes on each of the referendums.
I consider that the first vote he cast was the valid one since it was earlier and should have been accepted, so I entered that one, not realizing that his vote on the referendum was different.
And so, this is where we are with Iason’s vote: Is the failed vote valid, since it was only rejected by a technical issue? If so, the current ballot stands.
If it was not valid, then the Wittenberg ballot is valid.
In both cases, the ballots do not affect the result of the election or even the referendums, so in theory, we are at the point where early next week, we should have a three-member complete validation.