Officials say nonpartisan races added to confusion in primary

County officials are sorting through what happened during the June 28 primary when some Republican voters were turned away from voting.

The County Election Board has looked at each precinct in the recent City of Tulsa election and have determined the issue to be confined to 10 precincts, not all 176. In those 10 precincts, 25 voters were not issued the City of Tulsa ballot.

“When we received the first phone call regarding this issue, our staff immediately contacted each precinct located in the City of Tulsa,” a spokesman Patty Bryant said. “While this should not have happened in any of the City of Tulsa precincts, it does not appear as severe as some media reports suggested.

“This nonpartisan election was complicated in that it was being conducted at the same time as the closed primary federal, state and county elections which were partisan.

“Tulsa County is proud of our precinct officials. This was a complicated election with the many different ballots available at each precinct.

“I regret that this occurred and apologize to any voter that was affected by this error. We are working with precinct officials to try to ensure that this sort of mistake does not happen in the future.”

The next scheduled election is a runoff vote on August 23. On the ballot will be a GOP runoff for Tulsa County Court Clerk between Donald Newberry and Ron Phillips. In State House District 67, there will be a GOP runoff between Tom McCloud and Scott McEachin. In State Senate District 25, there is a GOP runoff between Lisa Kramer and Joe Newhouse. In Senate District 39, there is a runoff between Republicans Amanda Teegarden and Dave Rader.

July 29 is the last day to apply for voter registration in order to be eligible to vote in the August 23 runoff election.

Also on August 23 will be a special utility franchise election for the City of Jenks and a special bond election for the City of Bixby.

Bryant said that persons who are United States citizens, residents of Oklahoma, and at least 18 years old may apply to become registered voters.

Those who aren’t registered or need to change their registration may apply by filling out and mailing an Oklahoma Voter Registration Application form in time for it to be postmarked no later than midnight July 29.

Bryant said applications postmarked after that time will be accepted and processed, but not until after August 23, 2016.

Oklahoma Voter Registration Application forms are available at the County Election Board office located at 555 North Denver Ave., Tulsa, and at most post offices, tag agencies and public libraries in the county. Applications also are available at www.elections.ok.gov.