Michael Schlink elected to Morrisville Town Council

January 18, 2012 4:04:12 PM PST
The November race for Morrisville town council has been decided after two months of challenges. The winner is Michael Schlink, who unseated incumbent Linda Lyons.

It was a close race to begin with, and it was close when it ended with just a three vote margin. However, it's not so much the result that is the big news, it's how it happened.

The decision caused some fireworks in the Wake County Board of Elections Wednesday. The three member board was very unhappy over a ruling made by the State Board of Elections that Wake board members say changed the rules, more than two months after the vote.

It all comes down to eight absentee ballots in the Morrisville race which weren't counted because they were received after the deadline. Wake board members say state law is clear -- those ballots shouldn't be counted. However, a letter from State Board of Elections Chairman Larry Leake ordered Wake to open them up, and include them in the final tally.

Wake board members followed that directive but not without strongly objecting first.

"Elections are about people having confidence in a system that follows rules of conduct," said David Robinson with the Wake County Board of Elections. "I don't want to be that person who goes into a middle school and say, 'yeah, except for when we change it.'"

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