Tellers begin hand-counting thousands of ballots Sunday afternoon following GOP convention

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RICHMOND, Va (WRIC) – Dozens of tellers began counting ballots from Saturday’s state convention by hand Sunday afternoon in the Marriott hotel ballroom downtown Richmond.

It brings Virginia one step closer to knowing who will compete for Virginia’s top political offices this November.

Around 60 to 80 tellers were inside the Marriott ballroom Sunday afternoon counting ballots.

Chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia Rich Anderson told 8News they started counting for the attorney general’s race first because the race has the fewest number of candidates.

Anderson went on to say that this is the first time these tellers are doing a live ballot count, and once they’re complete with the attorney general’s votes, they’ll move on to counting ballots for the governor’s and lieutenant governor’s race.

He said Sunday has been a successful follow to Saturday, but it has been a ‘herculean effort’ to plan up to now because this is the largest state party convention in United States history.

“This is the first time we’ve done anything on this large of a scale,” Anderson said.

Rather than choosing a single candidate in each category, delegates ranked each candidate during Saturday’s convention.

The ranked voting method was used last year on a smaller scale, and Anderson said it mirrors the methods they’ve used in Australia’s national elections to make for an effective process.

“That was at 12 locations involving about 3,000 people. This was infinitely larger in both numbers and scope,” he said, referring to last year.

“The key here, and I’ve been saying this for weeks and weeks, is it’s more important not to move quickly, but through this hand-count method, to move methodically and carefully so that when we’re all done everybody in that room upstairs has confidence that their work has been conscientious and is reliable and that the candidates are in fact who the people wanted,” Anderson told 8News Sunday.

Anderson’s goal would be to finish up ballot counting by Tuesday or Wednesday.

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