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El Paso County resists blue trend how?

Two articles caught my eye in this morning’s Gazette, and I’d like to thank the editors for putting them side by side. The first lauded El Paso County’s strong Republican push-back to the Obama landslide, the other illuminated Clerk and Recorder Bob Balink’s dubiously legal measures at the EPC polling stations. Do the Gazette editors think, as I, that one of these stories could have a bearing on the other?

The first article was written with the partisanship we’re used to from the Gazette. In face of this election’s “blue tsunami,” El Paso County remained high and dry. Can we read this any other way than meaning “safe” and Republican (red), in the face of the Obama danger? The article detailed how El Paso County voted against the prevailing tide. Even the Democratic candidates who won elsewhere were “stomped” here. Stomped –like cockroaches?

The adjacent article was about the Clerk and Recorder. It reported that on election day, the media had been banned from the local polling places. This measure was in defiance of common practice and, the question was raised, even election law. Apparently, lawsuits may follow.

Mention was also made of Balink’s attempt to intimidate Colorado College students.

Did the media ban mask inappropriate election worker activity? Had the CC letter deterred student voters?

The article did not mention a yet-to-be investigated story, the mysterious fire alarm at Centennial Hall, a half hour after voting closed. Everyone had to leave the building. By the way, the fire alarm tactic is a recurring theme if you’ve watched video reports of past election irregularities, in this new age of the self-deputized citizen poll watcher.

Centennial Hall was not only the main poll station downtown, and the chief early voting location, it was the central office into which all the El Paso County precincts reported their election results. Might there be a story here?

The article also didn’t address why in El Paso County, paper ballots were not permitted for early voters. Only Diebold touch-screen machines were available for the early birds, who one might guess would have been the most activated of the new wave.

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