Stoke election result upheld

Stoke’s The Sentinel newspaper reports the latest in the case of an election won by one vote with one ballot apparently missing:

The public inquiry, which began on Monday, looked into why 742 postal vote envelopes were counted before election night, of which 26 were rejected, leaving 716, but only 715 were accounted for after the official count.

The petition was rejected by electoral commissioner Richard Mawrey, who said it had led to cumulative costs of six figures for both parties.

He said the “missing” vote could be explained by mistakes in the recording of information on the records.

“They seem to be no more than the result of the miscasting of figures which were themselves correct or the misrecording of a rejected postal voting statement which has been discovered and rectified.

“It seems to me that we have eliminated the discrepancies.

“If the discrepancies are eliminated, there is nothing from which a court could draw the inference that a vote might have gone astray.

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