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Hillsborough election workers hope accuracy, transparency bolsters voter confidence

Following numerous counts, "...the numbers all come out the same," Hillsborough Elections Supervisor Craig Latimer said.

TAMPA, Fla. — After more than a week of counting and recounting, the results of Hillsborough County’s primary election are finally on their way to Tallahassee.

Hillsborough’s Canvassing Board certified the results Tuesday morning.

Election workers counted the primary ballots three times — early ballots and those collected on Election Day — then again during a verification audit. And then a third time during the mandatory recount.

“And the numbers all come out the same,” said Hillsborough Elections Supervisor Craig Latimer. “I mean, they should do nothing but give confidence to voters that these machines count accurately and produce the results accurately.”

Latimer hopes that accuracy, along with the transparency of the process, will help dispel unfounded conspiracy claims that can undermine voter confidence.

“Here’s the proof. Here’s what the machine counted. Here’s what the recount produces. Here’s what our audit produced,” Latimer said. “So, everything is there — should give people confidence in the elections.”

Latimer says the voting machines used in the primary will now be reset to zero, stored under lock and key with 24/7 video surveillance and card-key access limited to a select few until the machines are tested again before the upcoming midterm elections.

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