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Missouri makes 'what-if' rules for optical scan ballots

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The new rules will determine, for example, whether crossing out all the other names in this case would constitute a vote for Mark Twain for Governor. (KWMU photo)

By Tom Weber, KWMU

St. Louis – The state of Missouri is establishing rules to let local election officials know how to count certain ballots.

New optical scan machines are being introduced across the state. Voters are supposed to fill in the bubble next to the candidate's name they want.

But the new rules will outline whether a vote counts if, for example, the voter circles a candidate's name, or draws an arrow to whom they want.

Stacey Temple is with the Missouri Secretary of State's office.

"What the rules is to help establish what the voter intent is, so you have a very clear picture as to what you need to count as a vote," Temple said.

St. Louis had its first city-wide test of the new machines in this week's election.

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