County Clerk Backtracks on Planned Schedule for Releasing Election Results

Clackamas County Clerk Sherry Hall on Tuesday announced that her office would post updated results at least once after polls close that night, after previously telling media outlets they would wait nearly 24 hours before sharing new tallies.

The orginal plan, which was first reported by The Oregonian Monday, was to release preliminary election results just after polls close at 8 p.m. Tuesday, then wait until 6 p.m. Wednesday before posting an update.

That would have run significantly counter to the way other county clerk’s offices — including Clackamas’ — have operated in past elections. Multiple officials told The Oregonian they would post no fewer than three updates Tuesday night, which is common practice.

As the state’s third most-populous county, delays from Clackamas could hold up the results of key races including governor, the nationally watched Congressional District 5 race between Democrat Jamie McLeod-Skinner and Republican Lori Chavez-DeRemer and two important races for the Clackamas County Commission, among others.

However, shortly before 1 p.m. Tuesday, Clackamas County’s communications office reported that elections officials would, in fact, update results on Election Night, with a planned initial drop at 8:10 p.m. and another at 10:30.

Future results will be posted at 6 p.m. Wednesday, November 9, and in the following days or earlier if they are available, county officials said.

Clackamas County spokeswoman Kimberly Webb told the Current that Hall did not say why she had decided to amend the results schedule Tuesday afternoon.

Hall has overseen a series of mishaps in her 20 years as Clackamas County’s clerk, including the largest election debacle in state history during the May primary.

Hall had advance notice in May that tens of thousands of damaged ballots would need to be duplicated by hand, but she waived off help from state and county officials for days. The fiasco postponed election results for 10 days after the rest of Oregon’s counties finished their tallies.

Hall is running for re-election against challenger Catherine McMullen, a Clackamas County resident who currently works as an elections specialist for Multnomah County.

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