By kadyomalley - Tuesday, November 4, 2008 - 67 Comments
According to ITQ’s tireless source on the ground, the recount is over and after a full ballot-by-ballot recall, Ujjal Dosanjh has held onto his seat with a 20 vote margin. Whoo! Go democracy! Does everybody feel a comforting sense of closure now?
The Vancouver Sun has the details.
UPDATE: Yes, she did concede, but ITQ has been told that every vote was, in fact, counted.
By kadyomalley - Monday, November 3, 2008 at 11:26 AM - 31 Comments
There was a brief moment of panicked confusion at the ITQ RecountWatch desk this morning after Commenter (and blogger in her own right) Joanne noticed that Elections Canada had upgraded the status of the Vancouver South recount to “completed”. But if you check the date, it seems that those are the results as initially certified by the judge on October 24, 2008 — the day of the original (and, at the time, ostensibly finalized) “partial” recount of rejected and special ballots (plus a dozen or so handpicked ballot boxes) that sparked the original controversy over whether the Conservative candidate, Wai Young, had, in fact, conceded, and eventually led the judge to reverse his decision and go back to counting the remaining ballots by hand.
According to ITQ’s source on the ground in Vancouver, the hand count will resume today, as scheduled. The numbers that currently appear on the Elections Canada site were, indeed, certified by a judge, but have not yet been validated, which, as far as ITQ understands the process, will not occur until everyone in Vancouver South is satisfied with the results of the recount.
(Incidentally, we’ve been told – unofficially, of course – that there has been almost no movement in the numbers since the recount got back underway on Friday – by the end of the day, the margin had changed by just one vote– in Ujjal Dosanjh’s favour, no less. Oh, if only we were in British Columbia to chronicle the hijinx in realtime, although I bet the judge wouldn’t look kindly on a liveblogger in his counting room.)
For the full Vancouver South Recount backstory – well, the ITQ version thereof, anyway – start here.
UPDATE: According to the Vancouver Sun, with more than 80% of the boxes counted, the margin has shrunk to 21 (from 22). They’re hoping to finish up tomorrow.
UPDATED: Vancouver South Recount: It's back on, y'all – although it's still not clear whether every vote will be counted.
By kadyomalley - Thursday, October 30, 2008 at 2:35 PM - 84 Comments
That’s what I heard from someone who was supposed to attend today’s hearing, at least — you know, the one in which Wai Young and a Conservative Party lawyer were going to appeal the decision to suspend the count last week. Apparently, the judge took the initiative to restart the count before the lawyers had even had the chance to make their arguments, so it’s back to the ballot-by-ballot examination tomorrow.
Will every vote be counted this time around? I guess that will depend on whether the margin is still as narrow after spending a few hours going through more of the unopened boxes of ballots; while a judicial recount cannot be terminated by any party, it can be sped up considerably if both candidates agree to suspend the hand count in favour of using the poll statements. Hopefully there will be at least one local media outlet allowed inside the counting room when the process resumes on Friday — given the mass confusion that has surrounded this story since it broke last week and the high level of public interest in the case, it’s hard to see how the judge could refuse permission to a reporter seeking to make sure that all the facts come out. (If ITQ was a few thousand miles closer, she’d be breaking land speed records to file a request with the court.)
Anyway, I’ll update this post with any new information that comes out.
UPDATE: From the comments, a link to a Vancouver Sun story on the recountroversy, which provides the most plausible explanation yet for what may have an honest mistake by the judge, based on an apparent misunderstanding of the Conservative candidate’s wishes:
Hira said the Conservatives appeared to concede during the recount process last Friday that Dosanhj was the winner, so Dohm signed a certificate, declaring Dosanjh the winner, which was sent to Ottawa.
But the Conservative candidate, Wai Young, later expressed she wanted a further recount.
By kadyomalley - Tuesday, October 28, 2008 at 2:25 PM - 30 Comments
I wish I had more of an update, y’all, but this is turning out to be a fiendishly tricky tale to untangle. I wasn’t able to speak to Ray Leitch, who is now referring media inquiries to the national office in Ottawa — specifically, to Ryan Sparrow, who would only state that the party “is disappointed that not all the ballots were counted during the recount” and will “explore various options in the next few days” to make sure that happens. “Regardless of the results, all we would like to see is that every vote in Vancouver South has been counted.” But let’s look on the bright side for a moment – he replied to my email! Promptly, even!
Anyway, I’ll keep ferreting away, but in the meantime, this 2006 Ontario Supreme Court ruling will tell you more than you ever wanted to know about the process of conducting a judicial recount — seriously, it’s like you’re there, sipping the room temperature coffee and grumbling over how out of date the printer drivers are on the Elections Canada-issued laptop – and, as a bonus, includes a special guest appearance by a current Conservative cabinet minister.
By kadyomalley - Tuesday, October 28, 2008 at 9:19 AM - 63 Comments
POSSIBLY IMPORTANT UPDATE BELOW – SCROLL DOWN!
Rest assured, ITQ readers, that I am doing my darnedest to get to the bottom of this story, which seems to get more confusing with every additional tidbit of information that comes out. Thanks to Wai Young’s decision to ask the court to order a second judicial recount, we have a better idea of what happened during last week’s now controversial partial recount – according to the Conservatives, that is:
The Elections Act gives the judge supervising the recount the option of counting all the valid votes, plus spoiled and rejected ballots, or only those from a sampling of ballot boxes.
In the Vancouver South recount B.C. Supreme Court Associate Chief Justice Patrick Dohm opted to recount votes from 28 out of 184 ballot boxes.
An automatic judicial recount was triggered because Dosanjh led by only 33 votes when results were tallied on election night Oct. 14.