Defective Ballots May Postpone Elections In Austria

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Defective Ballots May Postpone Elections In Austria

Photo: DPA

Originally appeared at DWN, translated by Karin exclusively for SouthFront

The Federal Presidential election in Austria is to be expected to be moved: The Minister of Interior indicated, that after massive shortcomings of the electoral cards have been found, a postponement has to be considered.

The search for a new head of state for Austria could be delayed again: Apparently because of non-adhesive ballot envelopes, the repetition of the President-runoff election, scheduled on October 2. is threatened to burst. Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka regretted “technical shortcomings” on Friday in a statement and announced that he would look into a postponement of the election.

Sobotka urged the manufacturer of the voting cards to clarify the situation until Friday. “If a proper conduct of the election, because of an apparent manufacturing defect, is not possible, then it is my duty as the supreme head of the electoral authority, to consider a reschedule immediately,” it said in a statement by the Minister.

Chancellor Christian Kern told ORF that there was “more than one question mark” behind the election date.

If the envelopes of ballots are not properly bonded, the vote is not valid. Experts therefore already expressed concerns that the adhesive-problems are opening a possibly renewed legal challenge to the election.

The Austrian Constitutional Court had stated in early July, after a complaint by the FPÖ, the first ballot on May 22 for invalid. Green Party candidate Alexander Van Bellen had won this by only a very slender margin in front of FPÖ candidate Norbert Hofer.

The Constitutional Court had justified the annulment of the election results by polling irregularities of counting ballots. Particular criticized was that some absentee ballots were already counted on election Sunday, and not the next day as mandatory.

Van der Bellen announced in light of the “adhesive problems” to suspend his campaign until the “debacle” was clarified. FPÖ candidate Hofer will carry on with his campaign program.

Both candidates have appeared on ORF – and had left an extremely boring impression. The performances showed that it is not possible to carry on an election campaign over such a long period. In Spain, there is more than a year no government – voters will go there in December for the third time to the polls, because despite multiple repetitions no functioning majority is capable of forming the government.

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