A machine that sorts ballot envelopes in Arapahoe County failed on election night, delaying the processing of 20,000 ballots. A hose on the machine broke at midnight, forcing the clerk and recorder staff to abandon the vote count for the night.
The machine was repaired on Wednesday morning, and the ballot count has resumed. The Arapahoe County website says, “The machine is now fully functional and our Election Judges are working hard to verify signatures, open envelopes, and scan and tabulate these ballots.”
In all, Arapahoe County is processing about 40,000 ballots on Wednesday. These include about 11,500 in-person ballots that were cast on Election Day, and about 3,800 ballots that require signatures to be verified, plus the ballots impacted by the hose break.
The results of several tight races in Arapahoe could be affected by the outstanding ballots. Results for House District 38, county clerk and District 2 Commissioner could ride on the ballots remaining to be counted.
In House District 38, Republican Susan Beckman holds a slim lead of 1.46 percentage points over Democrat Chris Kolker. Beckman’s vote count stood at 20,551 at 1 p.m. Wednesday. Kolker held 19,958, less than 600 votes behind.
In the race for County Commissioner District 2, Republican Nancy Sharpe leads Democrat Don Strickland by 1,463 votes, 26,587 to 25,124.
In the race for Clerk and Recorder, about 2,500 votes separate the two leading candidates.
The clerk and recorder’s office says it will update results every few hours, beginning at 1 p.m. Wednesday. http://bit.ly/AC18Results