Utahns Have Strong Confidence in Ballot Accuracy

Despite talk about election computer systems being hacked, eight out of 10 Utahns believe their ballot cast in November’s final election will be counted accurately, a new UtahPolicy poll finds.

Considering that one of the major party candidates – Donald Trump – believes this election could be stolen from him, that’s a pretty good confidence factor by Utahns. Besides Trump’s comments, speculation about elections systems being hacked by foreign governments have also raised concerns.

Dan Jones & Associates finds in a new survey that 82 percent say their ballot will “definitely” or “probably” be counted accurately.

Fourteen percent believe it won’t be, and 3 percent don’t know.

Still, it is still a little unsettling that 14 percent of “likely” voters don’t believe their ballot will be counted as it should be.

Part of that may be the mistaken belief that because this is a federal election that the federal government has something to do with counting ballots.

It doesn’t. Like most states, in Utah elections are run by elected county clerks, with oversight from the state Elections Office, directed by the lieutenant governor.

Even though most county clerks in Utah are Republicans, Democrats have a higher confidence in the accuracy of ballot-counting than do Republicans.

— 92 percent of Utah Democrats have faith their ballots will be counted fairly this year.

— 83 percent of Republicans do.

— And 78 percent of political independents do.

Sadly enough, younger Utahns – some who may be voting for the first time in a presidential election – have the least faith in ballot accuracy.

— Only 67 percent of those who are 18-to-24 years old, and 67 percent of those 25-34 years old, believe their ballots will be counted accurately.

— 30 percent of the younger group and 26 percent of the older group don’t believe their ballots will be fairly counted.

Those are not good numbers for the future voting blocs in Utah.

Hey, even Tea Party members – who don’t trust government at any level – are more confident in our elections.

— 73 percent of those who told Jones they believe in the Tea Party ideals say their ballots will be fairly counting this year, 23 percent say they won’t.

Jones polled 605 likely voters from Sept. 1-9. The poll has a margin of effort of plus or minus 3.98 percent.