Shifting vote totals from state frustrate primary watchers

Posted May 6, 2014
Updated May 7, 2014

— Vote totals for candidates in various North Carolina primaries fluctuated up and down Tuesday night on the State Board of Elections website, making for a frustrating evening for candidates, their supporters and reporters.

The number of precincts reporting and voter turnout figures on the state elections website also were less than 100 percent reliable.

Joshua Lawson, a spokesman for the elections board called the issue "a display-side problem," noting that data files sent to news outlets were accurate. However, no data was made available to media outlets for more than 90 minutes.

Technical crews were working on patches to fix the display of data on the elections website, Lawson said.

“We regret that initial display errors caused frustration for our voters and our county boards of elections,” Executive Director Kim Westbrook Strach said in a statement. “The state board takes seriously its responsibility to report accurate and timely results. Our dedicated staff worked throughout the evening to resolve these issues. This agency is committed to the continued improvement of our website.”

The State Board of Elections changed its software earlier this year for displaying election results. The system for collecting data from county elections officials wasn't changed.

WRAL News switched from using State Board of Elections data Tuesday night to using a combination of results from The Associated Press and returns culled from county elections websites.

The Associated Press sends observers into all 100 counties to report results, which allowed the AP to report results more quickly and completely than the state website.


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