MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

December 11, 2012

Keetoowah assistant chief candidate seeks recount

A man who lost a runoff election for United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma assistant chief filed a petition Monday requesting a recount.

Joe Bunch forced a runoff with incumbent assistant chief Charles Locust in November, earning 462 votes, or 35.68 percent, to Locust’s 545 votes, or 42.08 percent. The runoff vote totals were released Dec. 3, and showed Locust winning 483 votes (51.17 percent) to Bunch’s 461 votes (48.83 percent.)

Bunch filed the recount petition, claiming the stated vote totals were incorrect because of either human error or a computer glitch.

“I’m filing this not just for me,” Bunch said. “It’s for the Keetoowah people that put their trust in the voting mechanism and the election.”

Bunch requested a hearing before the UKB election board to present proof of “mathematical calculation errors” made during recount vote tallying.

Bunch’s petition alleges he was leading Locust 455 votes to 439 before 32 Goingsnake District provisional votes and 18 Flint District provisional votes were counted. Provisional votes are votes made by people not on the voter registry. Those votes sit in limbo until each voter’s eligibility is determined.

Bunch’s petition states he received 22 of those 50 possible votes, and that Locust received 28, which would have given Bunch 477 votes to Locust’s 468.

Bunch alleges the vote counter incorrectly gave Locust 33 provisional votes from the Goingsnake District and deducted one from Bunch, which led to what Bunch said was a faulty final tally.

“The error/computer glitch or human mistake resulted in the wrong candidate being elected,” Bunch’s petition states.

Bunch also alleged two violations of voting procedures. Bunch said 105 provisional ballots were denied during the regular election, yet all 55 provisional ballots cast in the runoff were counted, a violation of Section 807 of the election code. He also alleged there were 11 polling places in the regular election and just 10 in the runoff election, “a violation of voters’ rights.”

Reach Dylan Goforth at (918) 684-2903 or dgoforth @muskogeephoenix.com.

1
Text Only
Local News
AP Video
Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Raw: Bulgarian Monastery Dyes 5000 Easter Eggs Diplomats Reach Deal to Ease Tensions in Ukraine U.S. Sending Nonlethal Aid to Ukraine Military Holder: Americans Stand With KC Mourners Obama Greets Wounded Warriors Malaysia Plane: Ocean Floor Images 'Very Clear' Sparks Fly With Derulo and Jordin on New Album Franco Leads Star-studded Broadway Cast Raw: Two Lucky Kids Get Ride in Popemobile Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing
Poll

Should a federal judge have the power to strike down Oklahoma's ban on gay marriage?

Yes
No
     View Results
Featured Ads
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Stocks