Officials say 200-plus votes cast for wrong Nashville races
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — More than 200 votes have been cast in the wrong races in Nashville since early voting began in Tennessee, election officials confirmed Wednesday.
Davidson County election administrator Jeff Roberts said his office reviewed voter data throughout the night after The Associated Press first alerted officials Tuesday that voters were receiving conflicting information on what race they could vote in.
That review determined that 190 voters cast ballots in a wrong congressional race, 16 cast votes in a wrong state Senate race and six cast votes in a wrong state House race.
“The fix has been put in place,” Roberts said, adding he had sent the correct updates to the secretary of state’s office earlier Wednesday morning.
He remained confident voters would receive the correct ballots for the last remaining two days of early voting in Tennessee.
Officials say the votes that have been already cast will be counted for those races. Voters do not have an option to retract their vote.
The issue comes after Republican lawmakers split up multiple precincts throughout Davidson County while redrawing Nashville’s congressional maps in hopes of flipping a Democratic seat. As a result, voters now live in splintered precincts and some have been incorrectly grouped in the wrong district.
Roberts confirmed Wednesday that the problem was not contained solely to one voting precinct and was not contained to just one congressional race. Instead, it affected multiple addresses across all of Davidson County — one of the state’s most populous regions.
Democratic leaders were quick to raise alarm about the voting snafu and blamed Republicans for causing the unnecessary confusion.
“The Republican Secretary of State is actively participating in voter suppression. They know they’re giving people the incorrect ballots, and they don’t care,” the Tennessee Democratic Party tweeted Wednesday.
The secretary of state’s office has said the information on the state’s GoVoteTN app is submitted from each individual county and “relies on accurate information from the local election commissions.”
Under the redistricting plan, Republican state lawmakers carved Nashville into three different seats, spurring the city’s longtime Democratic representative, Jim Cooper, not to seek reelection. That created an open race in a newly drawn district — now snaking through six counties — that favored Donald Trump over Joe Biden by 12 percentage points in the 2020 presidential race.
The 6th District is the most favorable Nashville seat for Republicans, where GOP U.S. Rep. John Rose of Cookeville is running for another term. Trump topped Biden there by 30 points. Rose faces Democrat Randal Cooper.
Democratic candidate Odessa Kelly is running against incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Green in the 7th District, which extends through 14 counties. Its voters favored Trump over Biden by 15 percentage points.
“I’m shocked and disappointed to hear about the balloting issue in Davidson County,” Green said in a statement. “No one should ever have to worry about whether or not their vote was cast properly. The Davidson County Election Commission needs to fix this immediately.”
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