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Over 1,600 challenged Deschutes County ballots outstanding at deadline

(Update: Adding final tally, info, Blankenship comment)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- On Tuesday morning, two weeks after the election, Raven Radford was at the Deschutes County Clerk's Office to fix a challenged ballot.

"A few days ago, I received a letter in the mail about how my signature did not match," Radford said.

Radford said it didn't take long to fix the issue and get the ballot verified and said it felt good to know that the ballot was accepted.

"It's really, really important to me," Radford said. "It's important that my vote gets counted, so I wanted to make sure that I got that in by the deadline," which was 5 p.m. Tuesday.

County Clerk Nancy Blankenship cited several reasons signatures are challenged. They include signature changes over the years for voters who haven't voted in years, medical reasons like broken arms that cause signature changes -- and another issue.

"There seems to be a few parents that have tried to help," she said, "And when you look at the signature on the ballot for the child, it looks immensely like the signatures from the parents' voter registration records."

Blankenship's office works hard to alert voters about problems.

"That's why we pushed this so much before the election was over, so that people will update their signatures," she said. "And we did see a lot of that -- wish we would see a little bit more."

Blankenship said the final numbers late Tuesday were 1,608 unresolved challenged ballots for signatures not matching and 149 for ballots that had no signatures.

She said she'd estimated 2.5 to 3% of ballots could be challenged, due to the high turnout and large number of new or inexperienced voters, but it turned out to be only about 1.4%

That makes the turnout over 85%, with 84% being counted -- "not bad," Blankenship said Wednesday..

Bend / Central Oregon / Deschutes County / Election / Government-politics / Top Stories
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Blake Allen

Blake Allen is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Blake here.



      1. Specialed… “Not going to change anything”…. Sure it will ! It will change the fact that Oregon’s election was tainted- questionable- full of irregularities… 1600 of them. Which now comes full circle- just how many “invalid-illegal-suspect” ballots are Democrats on the left willing to accept ? Go ahead- what’s your number ?

        1. In states where a continued count might lead to a Trump loss: “STOP THE COUNT!”

          In states where a continued count might lead to a Trump win: “COUNT THE VOTE!”

          1. Odd comment considering President Trump was ahead in numerous states on election night when all of a sudden the ballot counting went off the air- yet continued behind closed secret doors for the hours afterwards !

    1. they had nancy talking about all of it during the election, the whole spiel about updating signatures and making sure you sign the envelope

  1. Parents voting their adult children’s ballots? That is because they know how their child would have voted if they had the wherewithall to do it themselves. Same thing happens on Grandma’s ballot. I have actually had people admit to it. Not sure how you stop it if they are good at forging signatures. The remaining “unclaimed” challenged ballots may be because they can’t get a hold of the kid to go in in person or Grandma is in memory care. Elections needs to check on the addresses these ballot were sent to.

    1. Or (gasp) grandma might be standing there telling whoever what to mark and then signing it herself – and everything still might be all on the up and up.

  2. Weird, huh Martha?

    See what is happening in Georgia?

    Mail in voting is the biggest con job ever and so many of you just march blindly off the cliff.

    It would be funny if it were not so sad.

    1. The Deschutes County Clerk is asking for verification of signature on numerous ballots. You have a problem with this? What I see happening in Georgia is the senior senator from South Carolina, the “honorable” Lindsay Graham, calling the Georgia Secretary of State and demanding he throw out legal ballots. What is sad is that you seem to approve of the destruction of our democratic process and approve of Trump declaring himself the President even though he lost the election by over 5 million votes and lost those states necessary for an electoral college majority, in other words you support a dictatorship. People are not blind, people like those in Michigan, are not going to stand for Trump’s attempt at illegally overturning this election. Show us the proof!

      1. So Martha- how many illegal-invalid-forged” ballots do you approve of ? I say more than 500 in a state- the election is tossed ! That state simply losses it’s EC’s and the rest of America will decide ! You better believe that would result in voter ID- American citizens only voting- put yer thumbprint here ! Dirty Dems continue the Coup to oust one of the greatest President’s of all time… You hate the guy so much- return the stimulus check he got you- and get in the back of the line for his myriad of covid vaccines and medical treatments- ingrates !

  3. This is reassuring and points to the many safeguards with mail in voting in Oregon. There has never been shown that mail in voting is more susceptible than any other type of voting. Time to stop with that lie. Quit feeding people with disinformation just because they have no interest in hearing the truth.

        1. And normal signature changes over time. The goal isn’t to have a signature match. The goal is to only count all valid votes.

          Deliberately not counting valid votes when they could have been fixed isn’t respecting the popular vote.

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