All this and more in today's voting news below...
AL: Marking pens to return for future elections in Etowah County*
Voters who didn't like using pencils to mark their ballots Tuesday will be pleased to know pens will return for the 2012 elections, according to Etowah County Probate Judge Bobby Junkins.
Junkins said Friday that Election Systems and Software, the election supplies vendor, included pencils in supply packets because of a shortage of pens.
Junkins said the pencils were not "as sensitive" as the pens and that resulted in more spoiled ballots. Some machines also rejected the pencil-marked ballots and voters had to remark their ballots, which took time.
[some states that have ES&S optical scanners mark ballots with black Bic stick pens which cost under $4.00 a dozen]
AK: Murkowski account to help pay for vote count
The legal fight will shift next week to Juneau, where more than 83,000 write-in ballots -- most, presumably, for Murkowski -- must be counted by hand. The write-in vote total is ahead of Miller's by 13,439 votes. More than 37,800 absentee, early and questioned ballots remain to be counted as well, beginning Tuesday.
AK: "GOP'S MILLER SAYS SPELLING SHOULD COUNT IN ALASKA VOTE"
http://electionlawblog.org/archives/017861.html However, the WSJ article writes that "On Friday, [Division of Elections Director] Ms. Fenumiai pointed to two previous Alaska cases in which ballots were counted for a candidate when voter intent was clear, even if the ballot wasn't filled out correctly."
AZ: Changes needed so early voting works properly
Far too many voters, both here in Yuma County and throughout the state, are not returning their early ballots early, as intended. Instead, they turn them in at the polling places on Election Day.
That is a big problem because they have to be counted separately and it can delay final results for days.
CA: Elections officials: Ballot-counting takes time
As of Friday, 1.9 million ballots remained to be counted in California, including more than 1.4 million vote-by-mail ballots and another 451,056 provisional ballots.
CA: Cooley's lead in attorney general widens Sunday
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/california-politics/2010/11/cooleys-lead-in-attorney-general-race-appears-to-widen-sunday.html The lead in the attorney general's race has see-sawed between the two candidates since election night, and with considerably more than 1 million ballots remaining to count, could easily reverse again.
CA: Registrar: Mail-in ballots counted (Riverside County)
http://www.mydesert.com/article/20101107/NEWS0301/11070347/Registrar-Mail-in-ballots-counted 2,000 damaged, 28,800 provisional ballots remain
Nearly 2,000 ballots that were damaged had to be duplicated and were expected to be counted by early today.
CA: Voters complain about vote-by-mail ballots* (absentee by mail)
One Oceano voter said she showed up to cast her ballot yesterday, only to be told she was registered to vote by mail instead of at the polls.
She says she saw others there with the same problem and that they were given special ballots called provisional ballots
CO: Kathleen Curry Wins Lawsuit Over Counting Write-in Votes
On November 5, a Colorado state district court ruled that votes for write-in candidates in which the voter forgot, or didn't know, to also fill in the oval next to the write-in line should be counted.
As a result of the ruling, there will be such a human-eye count. It is possible the Secretary of State will appeal this decision to the State Supreme Court, however.
CT: Toward an end to long lines at the polls, miscounts and other election fouls
..."The time is now for Internet voting. Seventy-seven percent of us have Internet access, and the figure is constantly climbing. Those who don't have it at home can either access it at work or a library...
Paul Degregorio, former chairman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, is convinced that Internet voting can and should be used in more elections."