Minimal voting problems in Oklahoma

BY MICHAEL MCNUTT Published: November 6, 2008
It appears Oklahoma will come close to matching its voter turnout record set four years ago.

With all 2,231 precincts reporting, 1,462,137 votes were cast Tuesday in the presidential race between Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain, unofficial results show. That’s about a 66 percent turnout.

That amounts to 1,621 fewer votes cast this year than in the 2004 presidential race when 1,463,758 Oklahomans voted, Michael Clingman, secretary of the state Election Board, said Wednesday.

"There will be a few votes added to that before it’s all over with,” Clingman said. "”It’s going to be really close, probably just short (of the record).

State election officials are going through provisional ballots, those given to people whose names weren’t on registration lists at polling places. Final results will be certified Nov. 12.

No major problems were reported Tuesday, Clingman said, although a power outage by one of the optical scan machines in the Oklahoma City metro area kept the results of a state Senate race unknown until early Wednesday. Sen. Jim Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City, won re-election to the Senate District 43 post by 159 votes out of more than 27,500 cast.

While the machine was out, voters put their ballots in an emergency bin, Clingman said. Poll workers ran all the ballots through the machine after it was running to make sure they were counted.

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