State Elections Commission finds clerical error for Richland Co. voter, but vote will count

State Elections Commission finds clerical error for Richland Co. voter, but vote will count

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Monday, a long-time Richland County voter was concerned she may not get the opportunity in 2020.

Marjorie Fusci, 94, and her daughter Donna Fusci requested absentee by mail ballots for Richland County in February.

The ballots arrived in early October and were sent back quickly.

Donna said she checked on the status of their ballots on the state election commission website and found a surprise when she plugged in her mother’s information.

“So when I check hers, it kept coming up not a registered voter, and I went what?” she said.

The website brought back no results, leaving in doubt her registration and the status of her vote.

She said Marjorie has been politically active for decades and volunteered with the JFK and Reagan campaigns.

Marjorie said she was not happy about the news.

“Really made me mad. I was very mad to think they could just push a button and I wasn’t a registered voter when I done everything they told me to do,” she said.

Donna called WIS, who spoke with the spokesperson for the State Elections Commission, Chris Whitmire.

Whitmire found that the birthday in the state’s records was one day off Marjorie’s birthday.

He called it a “clerical error” and it’s unclear how it happened.

When the incorrect birthdate in the election commission records was plugged into the website, it showed Marjorie registered and that her ballot had been received.

The Director of the Richland County Voter Registration and Elections Office Alexandria Stephens said Marjorie’s vote will count because votes are not tracked by names or birthdates (which are subject to clerical errors).

“When they’re issued a ballot, it’s under their voter registration number. When it’s returned, it’s scanned in under their voter registration number and the voter gets that credit,” she said.

Stephens said she does not know where the clerical error occurred, but there are multiple possibilities.

“Sometimes the information is transferred from another agency, and so if it comes from that agency incorrect, that’s how it comes into our system,” she said.

Both Whitmire and Stephens said if there are concerns about registration information, voters should contact their county offices to update the registration.

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