Santa Clara County election office audit approved

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The integrity of the election office in Santa Clara County is being called into question. (KGO-TV)

The integrity of the election office in Santa Clara County is being called into question. A state assemblyman requested an audit because of too many mistakes were being made, and that request was approved.

State Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Cupertino) says it is rare for a registrar's office to be audited and the amount of errors occurring during elections is troubling.

As a voter, you trust your county's registrar department is doing its part to make sure the election process is fair. But red flags are being raised in Santa Clara County.

"I'm disturbed because we expect transparency and integrity in our election process. This is what we demand and so it's important that we have faith in our electoral system," Low said.

Low says there have been numerous cases in the county since 2010, where the registrar sent out wrong ballot arguments and ballots with missing information.

He says in another instance, absentee ballots were sent to people who were ineligible to vote. "Usually a state audit of this magnitude is rare for such an agency and that's why we want to make sure that we are focused on the type of scrutiny to ensure we have the accountability and putting the safeguards in place for the future," Low said.

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The Joint Legislative Audit Committee approved the audit request. Registrar of Voters' Shannon Bushey says the people in her office are human and there are times that mistakes happen.

"I welcome the audit to come in. It would be great to have an outside organization come in, look at what we do and how we do that. I look forward to any recommendations that would help us to improve," she says.

Bushey says her office handles elections in nine different languages in 80 jurisdictions and it's a complex process. She says every time an error has occurred, it's been corrected and communicated to the voters.

Low does not believe any of the errors have affected the outcome of races or measures but they're serious enough to warrant a deeper look.

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politicsvotingelectionselection resultssanta clara countySanta Clara
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