Fayette district judge candidate claims irregularities in May primary
Soni Shaner Mancuso, who was a candidate for district judge in Fayette County, told the Fayette County Election Board on Tuesday, she found irregularities and some human errors made during the May 21 primary.
Shaner Mancuso lost to Richard Kasunic II in her bid for the office in a consolidation of districts represented by District Judges Jesse Cramer and Dwight Shaner. Shaner is Shaner Mancuso's father.
Some of the errors Shaner Mancuso discussed Tuesday included write-in voters receiving the wrong ballot for their political party, pencils being used to write in the voting books and voting lists when pens should have been used and books showing a different number of Republican votes for a ward when the totals show a different number.
“This is wrong and people have to be held accountable,” she said. “What can be done?”
Fayette County Commissioner Angela Zimmerlink asked Fayette County Election Bureau Director Larry Blosser if it would be possible to make certain that his office provide enough training days prior to an election and go over everything with poll workers to try to avoid similar mistakes.
While the judges of election and the poll workers are not mandated to attend the training days, Zimmerlink said the board and the bureau should do their best to encourage them to attend.
Zimmerlink said there was plenty of blame to go around from the board to the bureau to the workers and even to the voters, many of which aren't familiar with the policies or rules when arriving at the polls.
Blosser said some voters will sign the voting book and have their name entered on the voting list, but would leave if the line is too long, or would say they're going to cast a write-in ballot only to decide to take a voting machine if it frees up. He has witnessed a voter fill out a write-in ballot and then place it in his pocket and walk out before he was called back.
Fayette County Commissioner Al Ambrosini said the issue was about training and procedures. He didn't see anything suggesting voter fraud or any legal issues.
“We have to continue to go over the rules, make sure they're easy to read and follow,” Ambrosini said.
Shaner Mancuso said she was not at the hearing to challenge the recount or make an accusation of voter fraud, but she asked the board if she could view the voting books and the voters lists and compare them to the ballots.
Zimmerlink said she will have county Solicitor Sheryl Heid look into the legal code of the request. It may infringe on the privacy rights of the voters.
Shaner Mancuso told the board she would like a refund of the $1,200 she spent on the recount because of the errors she found in the book work. The request was not discussed by the board.
This month's recount showed Shaner Mancuso picking up two paper-ballot votes but did not appear to change the primary results, according to the election bureau.
The recount showed Kasunic, who picked up one vote in the recount, five votes ahead of Shaner Mancuso to claim the Republican nomination in the primary. Kasunic also won the Democratic nomination.
Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Father, son offered plea deals in child pornography case in Fayette County
- Man charged with sexual assaults on girl in Fayette
- 2nd defendant to enter plea in Connellsville homicide
- Connellsville father to plead guilty in stabbing
- 4 projects suggested for block grant funding in Connellsville
- Connellsville native, puppeteer makes it to semifinals of ‘America’s Got Talent’
- 3 accused in Uniontown in use of stolen credit card
- Record golf ball collection drives Connellsville native
- Winery proposed for dry Saltlick
- Bridge, road grants OK’d for work in Perry Township
- Engine roar lures fans to Fayette County Fair Demolition Derby