- Just because you voted in September’s election, that doesn’t mean it was counted.
Elections Canada officials admitted Monday more than 200,000 mail-in ballots were not counted, says Blacklock’s Reporter.
The number of ballot kits that were late, cancelled or marked as lost in the mail was greater than the margin of victory.
“We are deeply sorry for any elector who was unable to vote on election day,” said Susan Torosian, executive policy Director for Elections Canada.
Figures on wayward ballots were detailed in a report tabled in Parliament.
The agency sent ballot kits to 1,274,447 electors who asked to vote by mail. Of those only 1,068,543 were returned and counted.
The difference of some 205,000 uncounted ballots included 90,000 “returned late and not counted” and another 114,583 that were never returned. By comparison, the margin between Liberal and Conservative candidates nationwide totaled 190,790 votes
Blacklock’s at the time of the September 20 election documented cases in which electors applied for ballots by mail, but never received them in time to vote.
“The point is absolutely valid,” Michel Roussel, deputy chief electoral officer, said.
Ballots mailed out “five days, six days before the election date, that’s a tight deadline,” he said.
The report identified other anomalies in the first pandemic election in Canadian history.
“On September 21 Elections Canada was advised of one electoral district, Mississauga-Streetsville, Ont., where 1,589 special ballots from electors voting from within the electoral district had accumulated in a commercial mail room outside the control of the returning officer,” wrote staff.
“Because these ballots were received after the September 20 deadline they were not counted.”
In other cases, building owners who agreed to lease space to Elections Canada for polling stations withdrew the contracts.
“This forced returning officers to identify new places and secure leases within a very short time,” wrote staff.
As a result, the number of polling stations across Canada was cut 7% and “resulted in bottlenecks and lineups,” said the report.
In First Nations, electors in 274 of 635 reserves had to drive to another town to cast ballots.
The riding of Kenora, Ont. did not have any election day polling stations in three First Nations communities.
The agency overall received thousands of complaints over its conduct of the election.
“As of December 14 Elections Canada had received 9,410 complaints,” wrote staff.
“The majority of them were related to accessibility, voter experience, long lines and interactions with poll workers and voting by special ballot.”722100We are deeply sorry says Susan Torosian of Elections Canada admitted 205K votes not counted