(Update) Vote Counting Glitch Slows GOP Caucus

There were 158 people accredited to take part in Saturday’s Buchanan County Republican Caucus, yet 164 votes were tallied during the gathering’s first order of business. Officials say the totals were not challenged at the time and that the difference would not have changed the outcome.

Part of the problem had to do with the size and layout of the Circuit Courtroom used for the event. Many attendees sat in the balcony typically reserved for visitors.

Buchanan County GOP Executive Committee Chairman Bob Ott says two people from two different political camps were chosen to count the votes, but after several tries, the pair could not reconcile their vote totals.

So the decision was made to count each section of the room separately. The two vote-counters each came up with the same number this time, and the vote was recorded.

Ott beat out Larry Flichpaugh by a vote of 99 to 65 in the vote for caucus chairman.

Ott points out that the margin was large enough that the six votes did not affect the outcome. He also says no one objected to the vote-count at the time it was formally recorded.

The next order of business was to select a slate of 28 delegates and 28 alternates who will attend the Congressional District Convention in Chillicothe next month.

Ott says there were a few planks suggested for inclusion into the statewide platform during the state convention in June. Those suggestions will be taken up during the district convention. But because of all the time spent during the early vote tabulations, the caucus ran out of time, and under party rules, it came to a close.

Rick Santorum and Tea Party supporters arrived early to the Buchanan County Republican caucus Saturday.  Two hours before the start of the gathering, the lawn and sidewalk leading to the entrance at the County Courthouse were lined with dozens of Santorum campaign signs. By 9 a.m. Saturday, there were more than fifty people in line to sign in for the event.

There were a few Ron Paul and Mitt Romney supporters in attendance, and some of them were chosen as delegates.