21 provisional ballots in limbo in York County primary

Matt Enright
York Dispatch

York County's part in the 2022 primary election isn't quite over yet.

Out of 402 provisional ballots cast in the York County, 264 were accepted outright by the Board of Elections while 117 were rejected.

Now remaining are 21 provisional ballots that can be challenged at a public meeting at a date that's yet to be determined.

The 264 accepted ballots will be counted, President Commissioner Julie Wheeler said Wednesday.

"They will go into the system, they will acknowledge that these ballots have been accepted, then the envelopes will be opened, the ballots will be pulled out and they will be scanned and tabulated," Wheeler said.

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Provisional ballots are ballots issued to voters whose eligibility to vote is questioned by the local Board of Elections. The ballot records the vote while officials determine the specific eligibility. 

Elections Director Julie Haertsch said the 117 rejected ballots fell into three categories. Ninety-four were from voters who either not registered or registered without the necessary party affiliation, since only registered Democrats or Republicans can vote in their party's respective primary. Eight voters were registered outside of York County.

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The remaining 15 rejected provisional ballots were classified as "other." Haertsch said these ballots may have been lacking key voter information.

Representatives from the campaigns for Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dave McCormick attended Wednesday's meeting, though they offered no public comment. In York County, Oz leads McCormick by 2,497 votes. 

Across the state, Oz leads McCormick by less than 1,000 votes or 0.07%, according to The Associated Press. That would trigger an automatic recount across the state, which Acting Secretary of State Leigh Chapman has asked for.

McCormick's campaign has asked the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to order counties to count mail-in ballots that lack a handwritten return date on the return envelope. 

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A meeting is scheduled for the initial certification of the 2022 results at 1 p.m. Tuesday at the York County Administrative Center, 28 E. Market St. 

— Reach Matt Enright via email at menright@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @Matthew_Enright.