Data Merge Problem Snags Washtenaw Results

Responding to a telephoned query from The Chronicle, Washtenaw County clerk’s staff explained a disparity between result totals indicated on the county’s website for countywide races in the Aug. 7 election primary, compared with the actual totals that can be obtained by performing the arithmetic sums of precinct results. For example, the total indicated  on the election result website for 22nd circuit court judge candidate Jim Fink is 13,208, but the sum of the Fink column on the webpage is actually 11,717. All candidates totals, including those for Carol Kuhnke, Doug McClure and Erane Washington, show similar disparities.

According to the clerk’s staff, the disparity was due to a problem with merging the data for in-person ballots and absentee ballots for precincts in Ypsilanti Township and Scio Pittsfield Township. Affected races include the judicial race and the race for water resource commissioner, between Evan Pratt and Harry Bentz. Staff are working to correct the problem before the results are officially canvassed, which starts on Thursday, Aug. 9.

The numbers on the county clerk’s election result website are clearly indicated as “unofficial” results. The glitch illustrates why that disclaimer is part of the boilerplate for the webpage text.

Update 5:30 p.m.: Results are now displaying accurately.