Here’s another report of voters being denied proper ballots in this year’s election — this time in Yell County.

I got a report Monday that a voter in Yell County had received a ballot that didn’t include the expected race for his state House District 73, in which Democrat Dana Bonham is challenging incumbent Republican Rep. Mary Bentley.


I called Greg Bland, chair of the Yell County Election Commission. He said the voter must have made a mistake. He said he was sure the race was on the ballot. He volunteered to go vote early himself to make sure all was in order. I thanked him for his trouble and sent an email asking him to let me know if he learned anything different. He never called or wrote.

Last night, a friend in Danville heard from Dana Bonham.  Bonham said Bland had called him. He was told 96 voters at the Centerville precinct were given the wrong ballot because of a “software issue.” That meant, among others, that they were given the race for House District 21 instead of District 73. In that race, Republican Rep. Marcus Richmond has a Democratic challenger, Stele James


According to what my friend was told by Bonham, there’ll be no opportunity for the 96 voters to revote. So eight dozen voters got the wrong ballot for at least one race. That has implications in both races, of course.

The Democratic Party was notified by Bonham last night and may step in today. I wrote Greg Bland last night about the apparent emergence of a problem. He did not respond.


There’s a moral here for ALL voters. Check your ballot carefully. Be sure you had an opportunity to vote for candidates you expected to support. Study the ballot before voting. If you detect a problem DO NOT VOTE. Ask an election official for assistance. And be sure to review your choices after voting on electronic machines. Don’t validate the ballot until you’re sure all races have been marked as you intended.