Faulty machine delays election results in Noxubee County

On election night, the Noxubee County courtroom was standing room only; however, the crowd eventually thinned out after spectators waited for hours for the results.

Posted: Aug 8, 2019 7:29 PM
Updated: Aug 9, 2019 9:48 AM

MACON, Miss. (WTVA) - On election night, the Noxubee County courtroom was standing room only; however, the crowd eventually thinned out after spectators waited for hours for the results.

"We had a problem with our OS machine which is the machine that we feed our absentee ballots through," Circuit Clerk Freda Phillips said.

"This was the largest election in Noxubee County in which we had 38 ballot types, and that's a lot of ballots to scan through in one night," she said.

After revealing the numbers at approximately 10 p.m., multiple races were close.

Officials told WTVA, with more than 1,000 absentee ballots, the results of the election were subject to change.

"I don't like leaving absentee ballots uncounted because you never know what the situation may be," Phillips said.

However, the machine overheated and shut down because of the number of ballots.

"It starts spitting out black marks and that would not allow ballots to be read."

The committee began to search for a new machine.

They borrowed four different machines before finally getting one that would work.

The Secretary of State's Office offered the option to wait until the next morning to count ballots.

However, Phillips decided absentee ballots would be counted even if it meant staying until the next day.

"In the best interest of my county and in the best interest of my candidates, it was best for me to make sure that those absentee ballots were counted here that night, in the place of me locking them up than doing this or that. It's best to be safe than sorry."

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