Did Mark Fisher Get His 15%?

There was real drama at the Massachusetts Republican Party nominating convention on Saturday but it happened after the delegates had gone home. Sometime after the delegates had endorsed Charlie Baker for governor the state committee finished counting the votes and determined that Baker’s Tea Party challenger Mark Fisher had received “14.765% of the total delegate count” and thus fell short of the 15% required to continue on to the primary ballot.

Or did Fisher get the 15% and we should be on to a primary fracas?

Here is the relevant portion from the state party’s press release announcing Baker as the endorsee:  Capture Fisher

As a matter of simple math 374 as the nominator divided by the denominator of 2533 gets Fisher to 14.765%.

The total denominator of 2533 however includes 64 blank votes; exclude the blank votes and the denominator is 2469. A numerator of 374 over a denominator of 2469 leaves us with 15.14% — and Mark Fisher makes the ballot!

But that depends on a rules interpretation that blank ballots should not be counted in the total and here things get murky. Convention Rule 23 states that Robert’s Rules of Order are to govern on matters not specifically covered by the convention rules. Robert’s Rules, as I understand them as an amateur parliamentarian (I am the parliamentarian of the UMass Boston Faculty Council) regards abstention or blank ballots as not counting at all, thus they are not part of the denominator, and therefor Fisher may have his 15 percent.

Convention rule 16 states in part that “The votes of a majority of the delegates present and voting must be obtained for endorsement by the Party. Voting shall continue until a candidate shall receive a majority.” The term present and voting would mean those present who vote, and blanks don’t count (my reading). If it stated simply “delegates present” the outcome might be different. Then Rule 17 on Disqualified Voters basically states that a vote for a candidate who is not qualified for the ballot “shall not be considered as a vote cast by a delegate present and voting, and shall not be included in determining the whole number of votes cast for any purpose of these Rules.” (My emphasis).

So Rule 16 contemplates the votes needed to gain the party endorsement; but does Rule 16 apply to the 15% provision?

Back to Rule 17, is a blank a vote for a candidate who is not qualified and thus not in the “present and voting” total that makes up the denominator “for any purpose of these Rules” (including the 15% requirement)?

Rule 23 also states that “The decision of the Parliamentarian on any point of order or question of procedure shall be final and binding, subject only to appeal by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Convention.”

But then if it was the Parliamentarian who made the ruling concerning the ballots to be included for the 15% decision on Fisher, that decision couldn’t be appealed to the Convention because by the time it was made the convention had been adjourned and the delegates were already driving home or in the case of the Young Republicans, partying at the Cask ‘N’ Flagon.

Glad I was able to clear that up.

About Maurice T. Cunningham

Maurice T. Cunningham is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts at Boston. He teaches courses in American government including Massachusetts Politics, The American Presidency, Catholics in Political Life, The Political Thought of Abraham Lincoln, American Political Thought, and Public Policy. His book Maximization, Whatever the Cost: Race, Redistricting and the Department of Justice examines the role of the DOJ in requiring states to maximize minority voting districts in the Nineties. He has published articles dealing with the role of the Catholic Church in Massachusetts politics and on party politics in the state. His research interests focus upon the changing political culture of Massachusetts.
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52 Responses to Did Mark Fisher Get His 15%?

  1. Mo–it strikes me that a public roll call of each delegation would have prevented this vague, somewhat secretive outcome. And it would probably have been a better use of the Convention’s time.

  2. Ed Lyons says:

    Professor Cunningham,

    First, it was an unexpected pleasure to see you and your fellow two professor-bloggers at our convention.

    As for the vote… where do I begin?

    - The party that is constantly complaining about voter fraud and wants Show ID to Vote conducted the most slopply, unprofessional, amateurish election I have ever seen! People didn’t know exactly when to vote. There were three ring binders with papers printed with names in rows and boxes at the end to check. No one asked me for ID. I could see how others voted as they showed me the sheets. I just pointed to my name and the person I wanted. We didn’t know when voting started and ended. I could have gone from section to section near the end and picked names of those who didn’t vote and no one would have been the wiser. The vote was conducted in the middle of crowded rows of seats – not in an easy to reach place. I saw Governor Weld, who is aging and frail, struggling to get through the seats to find where to vote. He had great difficulty and didn’t know where to go. One of his people had to use their earpieces to get the MassGOP to figure out where he was supposed to go. He looked confused.

    Then there was confusion about getting people to tally the vote. How was it done? I don’t know. People try to manually tally when the groups report in. Some groups, only having 40 people voting, were not prepared to report after 30 minutes. Why? How? Does it take 30 minutes to count such a vote with three choices? Then Chairman Hughes comes out and just announces that Charlie Baker was endorsed. No tally, no transparency, no anything. We are all looking at each other in confusion, and when the confetti cannons go off, we don’t actually know if Baker has an opponent or not. State Committee members are milling around demanding answers. No one knows the rule on blanks. Nothing from the podium. The cleaning people come in and we are all left confused.

    It was a goddamn fiasco.

    And then, we hear later that evening that three voters were unenrolled voters and one was a registered Democrat. Ugh.

    Want to hear something else? Weeks before the convention, I wrote in Facebook that I was worried about a terrible election and said we should have some Republican Town Clerks help out with the vote to make sure it was conducted professionally and had the usual auditability and transparency that we expect.

    Imagine if the rules had been clarified. If it was conducted in a better way. If it took an hour less due to electronic voting and tallying. (That hour could have been used better.) If the results were put up on the jumbotron and the ballot trail was visible to all. And then Kirsten Hughes announced that Baker had won. The convention wouldn’t have ended in confusion.

    We have four years before our next convention (assuming we still exist as a statewide party in 2018) and I am sure we will fix this stuff. But until then, I don’t want to hear anyone in the party leadership ever again criticizing how an election was handled or that we have to implement something like Show ID to Vote to stop voter fraud.

    Election reform begins at home.

    • Ed Lyons says:

      Oh, just to be clear for those who weren’t there or don’t know me, I was a Republican Super Delegate who lives in Boston.

      And even better – and this is rich – I wanted to get the MassGOP to consider better voting technology as a political issue, and sponsored a Straw Poll at the convention using a new, high-tech electronic voting platform. (Many checked it out but only eight people voted in it.) The platform is at Helios Voting and the outcome of my poll, which has full auditability and verifiability is here.

      Food for thought. :-)

    • Julie DeLillo says:

      Ed – I couldn’t agree with you more. We had no idea where to go to vote, we were just calling out down the row our name and our vote. It was so disorganized. In addition, our State Committee person told us if Mark Fisher got on the ballot our candidate in the special election would suffer because all resources would be focused on the Baker campaign. How amazing as our candidate’s special election is 1 week away and we haven’t seen or heard from our committee person any way. This was intimidation at its finest.

      This was my first convention and it was horribly disappointing to see the disrespect the party showed to Mark Fisher. I hope I am able to attend in 4 years and that my experience time is much better.

  3. Has anyone seen reporting about the exclusion of US Senate hopeful Frank Addivinola on a technicality?

    • On twitter he said he’s still in the race. He just didn’t get party endorsement. That’s all that was about.

      • Jeff Semon says:

        I don’t think that is correct. The endorsement is 50% +1. If you can’t get 15% you’re ineligible to be the nominee (ineligible to be on the ballot in a primary).

        www.massgop.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/2014-Convention-Rules.pdf

        Rule 6.1 “Only candidates who receive 15% or greater of
        the Convention vote on any ballot for a particular office may
        challenge the Convention endorsement for that office in the state primary election,”

        It is pretty clear. Candidates must get 15% and Frank got 0% because he forgot to fill out this form.

        www.massgop.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/IntentforNomination.pdf

        I’m pretty sure Marissa Defranco had a similar situation (although she she got a percentage) against Elizabeth Warren in 2012. I’m not sure if the laws/rules are the same across both parties, but if you got less than 15% and still get on the ballot to challenge in the primary there would be no reason to vote on a race at the convention.

        Fisher, Frank or Defranco would just go on collecting signatures. I think Galvin rules them ineligible.

        • Christopher says:

          As far as I know DeFranco filled out the necessary paperwork. I’m pretty sure she would not have been allowed to present herself to the convention or had her name in the teller books if she had not. Ultimately she only walked away with 5% and thus no ballot spot. Dems also hold their convention after signatures are due so there would not be an opportunity to keep collecting signatures anyway.

        • The Defranco thing aside, this is what our part chair said:
          www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2014/03/20/gop-congressional-candidate-richard-tisei-boycott-convention-over-antigay-marriage-platform/lROcGumGM0f1yWLEGQWdgJ/story.html

          She also noted that Tisei does not need to attend the convention. Unlike statewide candidates, who need the support of at least 15 percent of delegates at Saturday’s nominating convention to make the September ballot, he does not face a delegate vote.

          Did Tisei get 15% at the convention?

          • Jeff Semon says:

            @ Patrick – Tisei is not running for statewide office.

            @Christopher – Defranco got less than 15% but did her paperwork. Addivinola got less than 15% (0%) because he forgot to submit paperwork.

            Different routes to get to the same place. Either way, neither can be on the ballot to challenge.

          • Anonymous says:

            Tisei may not have needed an affirmation of the convention but I still think it is poor form (read: “rude & disrespectful”) for him to be the candidate of a party whose convention he refused to attend — particularly when he publicly announced the reason for his absence.

            This has nothing to do with gay marriage and everything to do with being a hypocrite.

            After pushing the party’s platform in one direction on one relative minor issue, Tisei took a quite fascist “my way or the highway” mentality and had no tolerance for diversity of opinion. But now that it has shifted back in the other direction, he now is not only demanding a tolerance that he refused to extend to others, but somehow thinking he has the right to not even be associated with his own party.

            Who the hell does he think he is?

            It would be one thing if he was someone so good that the party could not possibly live without, but he has lost the past two tries — and never won anything larger than a state senate seat. Worse, both his former house & senate seats — in quite Republican-friendly districts — are now held by Democrats, the woman who won the latter recently being elected to Congress.

            So why should the party continue to support this man?

        • I’m hearing that people in the party agree with you that Frank is not on the ballot because of the 15% rule. And Herr has said publicly he’s the only candidate on the ballot at this point. However, Cynthia Stead maintains that the 15% rule doesn’t apply for federal office which is what Frank is also claiming.

          I wrote a post up on things here:
          red.ma.altercate.net/2014/03/29/more-massgop-confusion-u-s-senate-edition/

          • Jeff Semon says:

            Patrick, seriously, does that make sense to you? A party goes through all the trouble of having the statewide office (federal or not) nominating convention just to go “never mind, it’s a federal race so a candidate can do whatever they want.”

            C’mon, be smarter than that.

            Just give Galvin’s office a call. You’ll get a definitive answer.

            Barring a successful lawsuit, Fisher or Addivinola will not be on the primary ballot come September.

            I’m willing to wager large sums of money on that fact.

          • Dr. Ed says:

            “Barring a successful lawsuit, Fisher or Addivinola will not be on the primary ballot come September.”

            And the party will have won a very Faustian victory — with Fisher claiming (with no small amount of credibility) to actually have won the 15% and no doubt loudly claiming to have been cheated, Baker is going to be hurt far worse then he ever could have been in a primary.

            Like I’ve said before, the “shootout in the lifeboat” is now evolved to folks touching off 155 MM Howitzers in the lifeboat….

          • I think Galvin’s office will tell me to ask the party. I emailed them last week, no reply.

          • Dr. Ed says:

            “I think Galvin’s office will tell me to ask the party.”

            Which raises a “good government” question that folks may wish to play with — if the political parties are self-governing institutions — if the parties are entitled to make and interpret the rules as to who is permitted to appear on the ballot, then why is the election conducted at the expense of the Commonwealth?

            Or looking at it a different way, if the primary itself is conducted by the Commonwealth, then why isn’t the election that determines who can appear on the ballot also conducted by the Commonwealth?

            It would be one thing if anyone who got X signatures was on the primary ballot, it would be another thing if the parties had the primary at their own expense and nominees just showed up on the ballot with letters after their names. I understand that the “we’ll let you run yours if we can run ours” agreement evolved in an era when everyone was in either one or the other party, but we have an electorate that increasingly is registered with neither.

            Is it time to go to non-partisan elections as has already been done by most municipalities? What would be the consequences (good & bad) of a system wherein anyone could run in the Governor’s Primary, with the top 2-3-4 people in that then running against each other in the General?

            Or, conversely, what would be the consequences (again good & bad) of a system wherein anyone who presented 2000 certified signatures to the Secretary of State was on the primary ballot, and only those already enrolled in the particular party were eligible to vote in the primary?

            I come back to this where I started — why is “Galvin’s Office” running part of this election but not all of it? Isn’t that kinda like being “half pregnant”?

          • I heard back from Galvin’s office:

            The 15% rule is not a requirement that exists in state law. Rather, it is a party rule, and determinations about whether it would apply to federal candidates must be made by each party. You may want to contact the state Republican Party to find out what their rules are for federal candidates.

            Nothing yet from the MassGOP.

          • Jeff Semon says:

            It’s not a Federal vs. non-Federal. It’s a state wide race and they are determined at convention for a PARTY.

            Independents just need signatures to Galvin’s office.

            R’s & D’s need 15% of convention support at minimum plus signatures.

            As stated in the rule posted earlier.

            AGAIN, why bother having the race be brought up at convention otherwise.

            I’m not sure why this is even still a topic of discussion Patrick. No one running for statewide office who receives less than 15% at their parties convention will be allowed to challenge the endorsee of the party for the nomination. Period.

            Case closed.

          • Jeff, I’d like an answer from the party. You told me to contact Galvin’s office. I did. They referred me back to the party.

            It’s a topic of discussion because I can’t get a definitive answer from anyone. Some people think he’s on the ballot. Some think he’s not.

  4. BTW, getting to meet Ed in person was a pleasure. I understand Jeff Semon was in the house as well. I’m sorry he didn’t choose to say hello. For the record, (as far as anyone knows) I was rested and ready for an impromptu live one-on-one debate with Jeff if he had made his presence known. ;-)

    • Jeff Semon says:

      I bumped into professor U and David Bernstein came by our table. I was not aware the whole masspoliprofs crew was in house! The invite to debate is a standing one professor Duquette. :D

      Perhaps this fall? Maybe promote and sell tickets, proceeds to go to charity.

    • Ed Lyons says:

      Professor Duquette -

      I doubt if it really comes through in his comments here, but if you met Jeff in person, he’s actually a good guy who would make a debate a good show for an audience without it being demagoguery or people talking past each other. With the right topic and debate framework, it might be both educational and entertaining.

  5. Maurice T. Cunningham says:

    Thanks for the comments and the controversy rages on. I understand that the GOP has been saying today that the terminology “blanks” was an incorrect usage and the correct terminology is that 64 delegates voted “present.” But there is no provision I see in the convention rules for a “present” vote nor is there one in Robert’s Rules. A “present” vote would properly be interpreted as an abstention, I think, and abstentions and blanks do not get counted.

  6. Christopher says:

    Based on my math and rule interpretation Fisher should have made the ballot. Present and voting is the default, otherwise the rules should clearly state “15% of all delegates recorded as being present”.

    • Dr. Ed Cutting (yes, I *did* get my doctorate!) says:

      “Present” when? Then, or four hours earlier?

      In a town meeting, it is present then and not those who were present when the town meeting started (which often is several nights earlier). Nor is it all of those who are eligible to attend the meeting, which in a town that has an open town meeting (e.g. Wakefield) is every registered voter, many times the capacity of the room itself.

      If the “present then” standard wasn’t used, absolutely every vote would fail based on the sheer number of persons not voting…..

      • Christopher says:

        At conventions roll call to determine official attendance is taken only once, so that is the record that would be used. However, if the present and voting standard is used which I think it should be then that isn’t an issue.

        • Dr. Ed Cutting (yes, I *did* get my doctorate!) says:

          Are Quorum Calls allowed? If so, strikes me that any minority candidate ought to do that just before the vote (I know of nothing in Robert’s Rules precluding one from doing this, even if it is clear that a quorum is present — and the chair has no choice but to determine if one is or isn’t. There may be ways for a Billy Bulger to dodge this, but any objective chair would have to determine how many people were present, which would be your number of people present.

          Remember one thing about Robert’s Rules — Col. Roberts was the Military Governor (or something) of San Fransisco and he wrote those rules to reduce gunfire. There were lots of meetings where people felt unfairly treated and were then shooting it out in the street (literally) after the meeting. He needed to stop that, and that is why he wrote these procedural rules which were intended to be fair to everyone.

  7. Maurice T. Cunningham says:

    Yep.

    I wasn’t back there so don’t know what happened, I thought there might be an explanation I missed; but shifting the terminology to “present” doesn’t change anything.

    • Christopher says:

      If “present” as opposed to “present and voting” is used, all delegates are counted whether they voted or not. Therefore the 64 blanks get added to the total and one must get 15% of that. Sounds like Fisher was held to just under 15% on that basis which is what the party used.

  8. Maurice T. Cunningham says:

    It does but nowhere in the rules is “present” used. Rule 16 says “present and voting” for the endorsement. Beyond that and Rule 17 on disqualified voters, we default to Roberts, which frowns on the use of “present” so the default is “present and voting.” If the convention rules stated “present” that would be one thing but they don’t.

    • Christopher says:

      I absolutely agree. I was just trying to point out how clearer terminology would have made the difference here with presumably less confusion.

      • Dr. Ed Cutting (yes, I *did* get my doctorate!) says:

        Reminds me of what happened in Maine back in 2012. There was a big time blizzard Down East, everyone knew you couldn’t drive anywhere and that it was coming so the folk in Washington County (down by Canada — Machias & Calais & such) asked for and were given permission to have their caucus a week later.
        And then the State GOP refused to accept those results. That is why Governor LePage refused to attend the GOP Convention.

        One other thing of note== LePage is from Lewiston, and memory is that Lewiston is one of the communities that did not have *any* (as in ZERO) votes from their caucus. So the Governor didn’t even bother to drive something like 5 exits up I-95 and vote in his own party’s caucus? Hmmm….

  9. Maurice T. Cunningham says:

    You are dead on there Christopher. Running these conventions is tough too — a lot of corners to see around.

  10. Pingback: Why not a roll call at state conventions? |

  11. Joe Abasciano says:

    Professor,

    I believe you make some valid points particularly in regards to the interpretation of some confusing borderline contradictory rules. Similarly others have pointed out some glaring flaws that can should be easily fixed going forward in regards to the archaic process.

    With that said I would like to interject a common sense hypothetical on why I think it is important to define and count “present” into the common denominator. Now I’m of the opinion we had two qualified stand up candidates for Governor at the convention. But what if going into the convention one of the two candidates was an Andy Wiener of sorts and had a plethora of scandal surrounding him or her but had previously gathered the votes and paid the delegate fee. Furthermore the second candidate was affiliated with 9/11 truther group but again somehow garnered just enough support and money to present a platform at the convention.

    I as delegate would and should be able to negate either endorsement with a “present” vote. Again on this day I believe both candidates had a legitimate presentation and I do not fault a delegate voting one way or the other. But I also respect the 64 who believed neither were qualified but waited 8 hours paying 4.50 for a bottle water to cast a “present” vote are very much a part of the equation and absolutely should be in the common denominator.

    Again that isn’t to say there isn’t there isn’t some obvious critical after actions reports but i’m of the opinion Mr. Fisher did not reach 15% so for 2014 it is time to coalesce and as a team we can fix or clarify what needs to be fixed for 2018.

  12. Dr. Ed Cutting (yes, I *did* get my doctorate!) says:

    1: I think there is a very big difference between actually voting (and casting a blank ballot) and what happened here, which is 64 people not voting at all. The issue of how to tabulate a blank ballot is a legitimate question, but this is just people who were *eligible* to vote.

    2: How many of them were actually present WHEN THE VOTING WAS TAKING PLACE? In a large event with 2500 people present, I would almost expect at least 64 to have left before the end. Get tired, hungry, want to go have a drink with a friend — that sort of stuff. It’s why Robert’s Rules recognizes Quorum Calls — you rarely end a meeting with the number of people whom you started it with.

    3: Were there people who felt it necessary to “make an appearance” at the convention and then quickly leave? I would suspect that there are people whose absence would be both noticed and problematic, but who neither had the time nor inclination to be there all day. So like at a social function, you make an appearance and then leave — and hence these people are counted as voters when they aren’t.

    4: If the voting was as described — people calling out their names to someone who cast their vote in a notebook (and not the voter himself/herself/itself doing it) then how do we *know* that the following didn’t occur?
    A: A vote being recorded other than as cast (i.e. for Baker when it wasn’t).
    B: A vote being recorded for Baker even though the person never voted.
    1: This being done at the time by the person with the notebook because that person
    knows that the voter has left and hence won’t be voting.
    2: This being done afterwards to bring Baker just over 85% but just barely so as to
    not raise suspicions, except got the math wrong and didn’t “stuff” enough. (this
    actually happens quite often in student government elections, they screw up the math.)

    5: Do we have enough inherent trust in the MassGOP to be honest when the results are not to their liking? I most certainally do NOT — what I saw happen at UMass Amherst in the Spring of 2009 (which included conspiring to get someone *arrested* for something he did not do) is why I am no longer a Republican.

    6: I personally think that Charlie Baker would make a good Governor and I held one of his signs (all day) during the 2010 election. But this is Bullbleep and, frankly, quite stupid.

  13. Pingback: GOP Convention Voters: Present and Unaccounted For, Sir! |

  14. Dr. Ed Cutting (yes, I *did* get my doctorate!) says:

    “But I also respect the 64 who believed neither were qualified but waited 8 hours paying 4.50 for a bottle water to cast a “present” vote are very much a part of the equation and absolutely should be in the common denominator. “

    OK, what exactly happened? This is now a THIRD version of what happened and only one can possibly be true. Hence is it:

    A: There are 64 physical ballots which were turned in unmarked.

    B: There were/are no physical ballots, voting was done by persons voting verbally with this vote recorded in notebooks, and there is no recorded vote for 64 persons.

    C: There are 64 physical ballots with the word “present” written on them, or somehow otherwise indicating a vote of “present” rather than for either candidate.

    I wasn’t there, I don’t know how it was done — but I do know that the above three possibilities are mutually exclusive. Are there 64 cast ballots that say “present” on them or not?!?!

    Folks, this is how Charlie Baker looses a second election — it was the gross stupidity & arrogance of the Tisei folks who stole defeat from the jaws of victory back in 2010. I was there, remember?

  15. Maurice T. Cunningham says:

    I admit I can’t keep up with all the good points being made here but I thank you all for making them. I have more to say on the party’s latest rules interpretation in the post GOP Voters: All Present and Unaccounted For, Sir! posted today.

    And Dr. Ed, congrats on the doctorate!

  16. Mark Fisher says:

    Tomorrow we’ll have a link to a video of the entire roll call. It is 15 minutes long. You can clearly hear how each district votes. The final tally is Baker 2095; Fisher 376; Blank 10.

    Any math gives me more than 15%. So where did the 64 blank total come from? It didn’t come from the roll call. It came from the back recesses of a smoke-filled room.

  17. Pingback: Present = Blank = Abstain |

  18. David Paddock says:

    Once again our Mass GOP, just like our RNC, has proven itself the image of the imperfection of man. Can the circumstances surrounding last Saturday’s vote and resulting corination of Mr. Baker be any more suspect? I don’t know but I do know that I want the truth. Win or loose, there needs to be a legally qualified interpertation of our Mass GOP rules and how “Roberts” may or may not influence these same rules. I am looking forward to Mr. Fisher’s posting of a link showing the entire roll call. I am also looking forward to the correct definition of a denominator in this instance.

  19. Mark Fisher says:

    The Smoking Gun:

    www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=okev116X6f0

    NUM DISTRICT BAKER FISHER BLANK
    1 Second Essex & Middlesex 41 9 1
    2 Second Suffolk & Middlesex 29 5 1 **
    3 Second Suffolk 40 9 0
    4 Hampden 15 15 0
    5 First Bristol & Plymouth 10 22 0
    6 First Hampden & Hampshire 43 19 0
    7 Second Middlesex 49 5 1
    8 Hampshire, Franklin, Worcester 11 5 0
    9 Fourth Middlesex 22 27 0
    10 Second Hampden & Hampshire 23 11 0
    11 First Worcester 71 17 0
    12 Worcester, Hampshire, Hampden & Middlesex 34 6 1
    13 Worcester & Norfolk 71 1 2
    14 Plymouth & Norfolk 111 16 0
    15 Bristol & Norfolk 64 12 0
    16 First Middlesex 42 10 0
    17 Middlesex & Suffolk 5 0 1
    18 Bristol, Norfolk & Middlesex 64 5 0
    19 Norfolk & Suffolk 66 2 0
    20 First Suffolk & Middlesex 22 7 0
    21 First Suffolk 48 11 0
    22 First Middlesex & Norfolk 84 11 0 **
    23 Third Middlesex 68 16 1
    24 Norfolk, Bristol & Plymouth 46 7 0
    25 Worcester & Middlesex 64 2 0
    26 Second Essex 57 3 0
    27 First Essex 80 13 2
    28 Fifth Middlesex 55 5 0
    29 Second Bristol & Plymouth 18 6 0
    30 Berkshire, Hampden & Franklin 24 3 0
    31 Second Plymouth & Bristol 46 11 0
    32 First Plymouth & Bristol 52 7 0
    33 Middlesex & Worcester 57 17 0
    34 Second Middlesex & Norfolk 64 4 0
    35 First Essex & Middlesex 84 23 0
    36 Cape & The Islands 102 16 0
    37 Plymouth & Barnstable 87 13 0
    38 Second Worcester 88 2 0
    39 Third Essex 69 3 0
    40 Norfolk & Plymouth 69 0 0

    2095 376 10 2481

    Percentage WITHOUT blanks 84.78% 15.22% 0.00%
    Percentage WITH blanks 84.44% 15.16% 0.40%

    ** Skipped, and then announced totals later in sequence

  20. David Paddock says:

    From a review of the “video tape,” certain things become facts. One such fact is the 40 districts cast a toal of 2095 votes for Chalres Baker, 376 votes for Mark Fisher and 10 blank votes. However, the total number of blank votes is made murkey by six of the districts which seem to not have mention the “blank” vote at all. They seem to have neither mention a “zero” for balnk votes or a definitive number of blank votes. These districts are Hampshire, Franklin & Worcester at about 2 minutes, 28 secods, Plymouth & Norfolk at 5:01, Bristol, Norfolk & Middelsex at 6:07, Norfolk, Bristol & Plymouth at 7:49, Worcester & Middlesex at 8:11 and the Second Essex at 8:25. The presenter of the vote at all six of these six districts let their voice drop after anouncing their fnial or “Fisher” vote. Altough these six vote announcers are not visible in the video, the ending or droping tone of their voice would indicate that they cast no blank votes.
    Given the numbers taken from the video, Mark Fisher received over 15% of the vote whether the blank votes audible on the video are incorporated in the demoninator or not.
    Two questions arise. The first is what is the count held by the officials at th Mass GOP for all three categories? Does this offical tally show a greater number of blank votes then what was presented in the video? If it does, the second question is where did the increase of blank votes come from to incease the denominator?

  21. David Paddock says:

    From a review of the “video tape,” certain things become facts. One such fact is the 40 districts cast a total of 2095 votes for Charles Baker, 376 votes for Mark Fisher and 10 blank votes. However, the total number of blank votes is made murky by six of the districts which seem to not have mention the “blank” vote at all. They seem to have neither mention a “zero” for blank votes or a definitive number of blank votes. These districts are Hampshire, Franklin & Worcester at about 2 minutes, 28 seconds, Plymouth & Norfolk at 5:01, Bristol, Norfolk & Middlesex at 6:07, Norfolk, Bristol & Plymouth at 7:49, Worcester & Middlesex at 8:11 and the Second Essex at 8:25. The presenter of the vote at all six of these six districts let their voice drop after announcing their final or “Fisher” vote. Although these six vote announcers are not visible in the video, the ending or dropping tone of their voice would indicate that they cast no blank votes.
    Given the numbers taken from the video, Mark Fisher received over 15% of the vote whether the blank votes audible on the video are incorporated in the denominator or not.
    Two questions arise. The first is what is the count held by the officials at the Mass GOP for all three categories? Does this official tally show a greater number of blank votes then what was presented in the video? If it does, the second question is where did the increase of blank votes come from to increase the denominator?

  22. Pingback: The Mass. GOP’s 15% Conundrum: Let’s Be “Reasonable” |

  23. Pingback: Headlines for Monday, March 24, 2014 » MassterList (Beta)

  24. Free says:

    Regarding the discussion about the Senate race:

    What determines who is on the ballot when a senate seat is up and there is no convention?

    Thanks

  25. Pingback: Fisher v. Massachusetts GOP: What to Expect Today? |

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