Hennepin needs about $5M for new voting machines

Hennepin County elections officials are hoping to get new ballot machines before the next election, although it could take as much as $5 million to replace aging machines, MPR reports. Elections officials there are hand counting about 5,500 ballots after electronic scanners could not tabulate them on election night.

Hennepin County elections officials are hoping to get new ballot machines before the next election, although it could cost as much as $5 million to replace aging technology, MPR reports.

Some of the county's current machines didn’t adequately scan thousands of ballots on Tuesday, and now officials are hand counting about 5,500 ballots that couldn’t be tracked by the electronic ballot scanners, the Star Tribune reported.

Minnesotan cast a record number of ballots on Tuesday. Many big urban areas are struggling to find the cash to buy newer, more efficient machines to handle more voters, Secretary of State Mark Ritchie said.

"I do think there is something about this very heavy turnout that we've seen that is going to push these machines to the end of their life," Ritchie told KARE 11. "In fact, most of the big cities have been in negotiations to say, where are we going to get the money to buy the next generation."

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