Sams garners enough write-in votes to get on August ballot
As election workers canvas the Carter County voting machines, one candidate’s write-in campaign was certified, placing him on the ballot for the August general election.
District seven commissioner Scott Sams ran a write-in campaign to retain his seat on the Carter County Commission.
Election Commissioner Tracy Harris said Sams had collected at least the required 25 votes to be placed on the August ballot. His total number of votes had not been certified. Canvassers had been certifying votes all day Wednesday but had not completed the tallies. Harris said they would complete those numbers on Thursday.
“Scott Sams has enough signatures to go on the ballot in August, but we don’t have the exact total yet,” Harris said.
In district seven, two candidates, Scott Simerly and Richard Burleson were on the primary ballot for Tuesday night’s election. Three candidates were selected from each district to move on to the August general election, which left an open slot for Sams’ write in campaign for him to be the third Republican candidate in August..
In district seven there were 95 total write-in votes cast. It has yet to be determined if all of those write-in votes were for Sams.
Harris explained that was part of the purpose of the machine canvassing after elections.
“We could get 70 write-ins in a district, but that doesn’t mean they were all eligible votes,” she said. “Anytime someone hits the write-in button, it counts as a vote even if they don’t write anything in so we have to check that. Some of the things that are written in might not be a legitimate vote.”
Canvassers examine each of the write-in votes to make sure they are for a certified candidate. They also make sure the data from the machine matches the information that was printed on the summary sheets that are released on election night.
One other candidate ran a write-in campaign in the fourth district where 34 write-in votes were collected. It has not been determined if all the votes were for the candidate.