Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Judge Rules KSTP Can Access Ramsey County Ballots

A judge in Ramsey County ruled that KSTP can have access to rejected and unopened absentee ballots from the 2008 election. KSTP took Ramsey County to court last year after it refused the station's public data request to look at the ballots that were never opened and remain sealed in their original envelopes. In a ruling issued Tuesday, Judge Dale Lindman said all rejected and unopened absentee ballots from the 2008 election in Ramsey County are "public data that may be viewed by KSTP."KSTP wants to look at the ballots while protecting the privacy of the voter. A spokesperson for Ramsey County told KSTP the county is reviewing the judge's order and there is no decision on a possible appeal yet. Attorney Mark Anfinson who argued the case for KSTP called the ruling "very significant." The 2008 U.S. Senate race hinged on absentee ballots. In November, a 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS investigation uncovered inconsistencies in the way absentee ballots were handled and counted in the 2008 election. Because of those mistakes, cities and counties across the state are changing the way absentee ballots are counted.