Secretary of State expects unofficial Michigan election results by Wednesday night or Thursday morning
LANSING, Mich. (WJRT) - Vote counting continue in earnest across Michigan on Wednesday, nearly 20 hours after the polls closed on Election Day.
Most of the results still being tabulated a day after the vote were in the state’s largest urban areas.
Michigan Secretary of State Benson said she expected delays before the election and initially predicted full results may not be available until Friday. However, she said on Wednesday that the vote count was nearly complete and full results should be available by Wednesday night or Thursday morning.
Benson said the delay didn’t have to happen.
“For about 18 months, the election clerks across Michigan and I called on our State Legislature to update our laws to provide times for pre-processing of ballots that were on par with many other states, like our neighbors in Ohio, who were able to count the vast majority of their ballots yesterday,” she said. "Our Legislature chose not to make that.”
Lawmakers approved a bill in October that allowed clerks to open the outside envelope holding absentee ballots on Monday ahead of Election Day. But election workers could not begin removing absentee ballots from their secrecy sleeve and counting them until Election Day.
Benson said more than 3 million voters received absentee ballots statewide and more than 2.6 million had been returned before Election Day.
Total statewide, Benson believes about 5 million to 5.5 million voters participated in the election, which is roughly 70% turnout of registered voters. Michigan’s record voter turnout was 5.08 million in the 2008 presidential election.
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