Monday, August 11, 2014
Auditor Risovi Erupts Again and Fetches the Sheriff To Intimidate Public Observers
Auditor Risovi let her temper get the best of her again at the Monday, August 11, 2014, re-canvass meeting at the Foster County Courthouse. She had no patience with an observer who asked her to speak up so the public could hear her answers to Recorder Hoppe's questions. She seemed to be mumbling her answers intentionally and verbally criticized Hoppe when the Recorder insisted on getting answers from her. Several times during the meeting, Risovi completely ignored Hoppe's questions, as if the Recorder weren't speaking to her.
When State's Attorney, Paul Murphy, spoke up to defend the public observers, saying they weren't interfering, Risovi objected to his opinion and accused him of not doing his job. That statement hit a nerve with the State's Attorney, especially since the whole election fiasco can be laid at Risovi's feet. When Murphy raised his voice to tell Risovi exactly what he thought, she ran out of the room to get the sheriff. What the sheriff was supposed to do, I'm not sure (and the sheriff wasn't sure what to do either).
The Foster County, North Dakota, election recount meeting which took place on August 4, 2014, produced some big surprises. The major surprise? There seemed to be 300 ballots missing!! The truth of this still hasn't been determined. However, on Primary Election night, Auditor Teresa Risovi announced to the media that there were 1453 ballots cast, a count which she certified with the Secretary of State's office. As well, at the time, she knew how many votes were cast for the position of County Auditor, close to 1400. Now, after the recount meeting, there seem to be only 1153 ballots in security boxes and only 1153 valid voters who were checked off in the official poll book as having voted. Risovi seems to be blaming this huge discrepancy on a "computer glitch", occurring in three separate machines which counted the votes... and the fact that the county failed to train her.
For people who hadn't dealt with Risovi before, another surprise was watching her temper tantrum. She actually erupted, yelled at State's Attorney Paul Murphy, and called him out - like someone who wanted to fight. Actually, Risovi challenged him to call the Secretary of State's office to clear up a rule for the meeting. Murphy responded to her calmly saying she was "making a mountain out of a mole-hill." When Risovi got what she thought was a response from the Secretary of State's office in her favor, she couldn't wait to point her phone toward Murphy in an effort to humiliate him. In the video you'll notice how all the adults completely ignore her like they would a child who is having a tantrum. What really bothers some of us is the way she sat, smiled, giggled and talked to herself after the incident, as if she'd won a great victory. Is this the type of personality that you want to continue dealing with as Auditor of Foster County?
Thursday, August 7, 2014
[Pictured here are the members of the Recount Board: State's Attorney Paul Murphy, Recorder
Lynelle Hoppe, George Topp, with Auditor Teresa Risovi and Assistant Auditor Heather Martin]
Today, August 4, 2014, Foster County held a recount for the contest of the Foster County Commission which took place during the June Primary. Donnie Theis, close to Paul Straley in the Primary election count, requested a recount of the commissioners' votes. Little did he know that his request would turn up some horrendous results... 300 ballots unaccounted for!!
How could 300 ballots just disappear?! After counting all the ballots which had been kept under lock and seal, the total ballots inspected at the meeting totaled 1153. The official number of votes for Foster County that the Election Board sent in to the Secretary of State for the June Primary was 1453.
State's Attorney Paul Murphy contacted the Secretary of State's office to find out what to do about this highly unusual situation. He was told to tally the votes on the 1153 ballots that were at the meeting.
In the chart below, the first number is the official vote count sent in to the State during the Primary. The second number is the count which the members came up with today (with 300 ballots missing).
Bill Bauer: 696/559
Jim Carr: 686/540
Pat Copenhaver: 417/331
Paul Straley: 353/295
Donnie Theis: 340/270
Joshua Dreher: 160/133
What is to be done about this huge discrepancy no one knows at present. Check back for more information. Hopefully soon, someone will solve the mystery of the missing 300 ballots.