Colorado Election Rules 18.6.4 Write-in votes
(a) If a voter designates a vote for a named candidate on the ballot and writes in the name of the same candidate in the write-in area, the vote must be counted.
(b) If a voter designates a named candidate on the ballot and writes in the name of a different candidate in the write-in area, it must be considered an overvote for that office if the number of chosen candidates exceeds the number permitted to be voted for in that office and no vote may be counted.
(c) During any recount of votes, if the number of undervotes in that race could change the outcome if attributed to a legally qualified write-in candidate, votes for that candidate must be counted whether or not the target area designating the selection of a write-in candidate has been marked, provided that the number of candidates chosen does not exceed the number permitted in that office.
III. NUMEROUS AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION RESOLUTIONS AND POLICIES SUPPORT ELECTION ADMINISTRATION ISSUES
The ABA has a long history in providing insight and advice on matters pertaining to the administration of elections. The promotion of statewide ballot counting standards is an extension of these efforts by the ABA.
In 1989, the ABA adopted the Ballot Integrity Standards Applying to Election Officials (Standards). The Standards addressed proposed rules and guidelines for voter registration, absentee voting, Election Day officials, ballot integrity, and guidelines for poll watchers. The Standards encouraged bar associations to encourage attorneys to serve as election officials, and for bar associations to assign attorneys to assist with programs that ensure the integrity of the election process.
Because of the widely reported issues in the 2000 presidential elections, the ABA adopted the Election Administration Guidelines in August 2001 (the 2001 Guidelines). The 2001 Guidelines addressed voting education and rights, voter registration, ballot integrity and post-election issues.
In August 2005, the American Bar Association adopted the Election Administration Guidelines and Commentary resolution to supplant the Standards and the 2001 Guidelines (Current Guidelines). The Current Guidelines were updated again in 2008 and 2009 to respond to problems that emerged in administration of subsequent elections. The ABA has recommended that all election officials ensure the integrity of the election process through the adoption, use, and enforcement of the Current Guidelines. Further, the ABA urges federal, state, local and territorial government provide adequate funding to ensure the integrity and efficiency of the electoral process.
In addition to the ABA’s support for election administration in general, the ABA has adopted a number of resolutions that pertain to voting rights for several specific groups of people, such as in 1992 for people living in U.S. territories to be able to vote in national elections, in 1993 to ensure the participation of homeless persons in elections, and in 2007 to improve the administration of elections to facilitate voting for people with disabilities.
Further, the ABA has addressed ballot integrity not just in both the Standards and the Current Guidelines, but also in resolutions regarding use of provisional ballots. Beginning in 1974, and subsequently, the ABA adopted resolutions regarding voter registration, improved opportunities to vote, and to support voter education.
The statewide ballot counting laws or regulations urged by this Resolution for adoption by states and territories as soon as practicable will continue to advance the rule of law and ensure greater clarity in election results.
John Hardin Young, Chair
Standing Committee on Election Law