"In Broward, where the official hand recount added 567 votes to Gore's county lead over Bush, a Herald-sponsored ballot review found that Gore's margin could have been 1,475, if every mark had been counted as a valid vote. In Palm Beach, where the official hand recount added a net gain of 174 votes to Gore's tally, the Herald-sponsored review found a potential Gore net gain of 1,081." 
 Recounts could have given Gore the edge
Broward, Palm Beach checked
The Miami Herald
Published Thursday, April 5, 2001
BY SHARI RUDAVSKY AND BETH REINHARD
 Review Shows Ballots Say Bush
But Gore backers have some points to argue
The Miami Herald
Published Wednesday, April 4, 2001
BY MARTIN MERZER
 "Older voting machines modified 10 years ago"
By Chris Barker, Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 23, 2000
At issue is the vertical column on the left side of the ballot, the same portion used for the office of president in the current contested election, said Jackie Winchester. That column was not used in previous municipal elections after voters often couldn't punch all the way through the chad because of flaws in some of the machines, Winchester said.
"Looking with what's going on now, I suspect there's some problems with the Votomatics not allowing the voters to punch the first row," Winchester said. Her signed affidavit citing problems with the voting machines while she was elections supervisor was submitted Wednesday at a court hearing to have dimple votes counted.
Election officials have no choice but to use the left-hand column in general elections because of the high number of candidates, she added.
The machines allowed punched chads to pile up under the left-hand column and prevent voters from punching all the way through, Winchester said. That could explain why some ballots currently being considered are punched all the way through in every column except for the presidential column.
The 1996 presidential election in Palm Beach County, which also had a number of "undervotes" in the presidential column that were thrown out, also was likely affected by the faulty machines, Winchester said.
Attorney Ben Kuehne, who is representing the Democrats in this election, agreed. He said after the court hearing Wednesday that the inventor of the machine said the first column should never be used for a candidate -- especially a presidential candidate -- because the machines make frequent mistakes in that column, including dimpling.
 "From Waste Product to Headline"
Douglas W. Jones
December, 2000 ...
None of my experiments produced what has come, since the Florida recounts of the year 2000, to be called pregnant chad. It is noteworthy that the force needed to dislodge chad from the card was not sufficient to dimple or deform the chad in any of my experiments. Close inspection under a 10x magnifier did not even reveal scratches on the ballot surface! In all cases, the chad ripped free at the corners and remained almost flat. A properly functioning Votomatic punching fixture should fold the chad over the tip of the pin, but this fold cannot be made until the chad is already hanging loose by two corners, and a simple fold generally takes less force to produce than a dimple with radially symmetry.
It seems, therefore, that the force required to dimple a piece of chad must be significantly more than the force required to cast a vote, under normal circumstances, using a pre-scored punched-card ballot. The only abnormal circumstances I can imagine that might lead to this outcome involve some kind of back pressure against the ballot, supporting the rectangle of chad so that it cannot tear free from the surrounding cardboard while the voter pushes from above. This might involve, for example, a pile of chad behind one voting position on the ballot blocking attempts to punch that position. A story published in the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentenel on December 1, 2000 presents some evidence that such piles of chad were indeed problems in some south-Florida polling places during the contested presidential election.
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