Caucus results were slow to be reported

Caucus results were slow to be reported

FRANKFORT, KY (WAVE) - Voting sites in Kentucky's Republican presidential caucus closed at 4 p.m. Saturday, but the GOP was slow getting results out.

Jefferson County party officials say they had ballots counted by 9, but those numbers weren't posted by state officials until about 10:30 p.m.

No county clerks or Secretary of State's office were there to help, but Kentucky Republican leaders prepared for it to come out like this.

Although, they may not have predicted it.

"It depends on us making sure we have integrity in our results, and giving people at the caucus locations the chance to count those ballots methodically and do it right," Mike Biagi, the Kentucky GOP Director, said. "That's our priority, doing it right, not necessarily doing it fast."

Fast never is likely when your ballots are paper, you mark them by hand and you don't get do-overs.

"Any voter would only get one ballot," Biagi said. "Our caucus officials were trained that if a voter made a mistake, they could reaffirm their preference on that ballot and it could be read and reflect their preference."

Jefferson and several other large counties with multiple polling places had optical scanners to speed the count.

But most Kentucky counties were old school, tabulating results by hand.

Meanwhile campaigns allowed representatives to recheck the math of the tabulations and to make sure voters were eligible, and showed up in the right place.

"We had about a half-dozen, more like 10 people, working the phones today to get voters the right information," Biagi said. "Any voter who is standing in line at 4 o'clock, either inside or outside the caucus location, could still participate in the caucus by around 4 p.m."

Which could have made for longer counts.

After all, Kentucky was not a winner-take-all caucus. Its 46 delegates were split based on a candidate's percentage of the vote. Five percent was needed to claim at least one delegate.

All to give the Commonwealth more of a say in choosing the nominee.

In that sense, it was mission accomplished.

Would the state do it again?

Ask again in four years.

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