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Richardson forms task force to investigate election debacle in St. Louis County

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Speaker Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, announced Thursday that he would form a task force to look into the possibility of voter disenfranchisement during municipal elections in St. Louis County on Tuesday.

Voters in the county experienced problems at the polls, including a shortage of ballots and incorrect ballots at certain locations. Voters were turned away from polling places in certain instances Richardson tasked Rep. Shamed Dogan, R-Ballwin, with finding out if if any wrongdoing occurred by appointing him chair of the newly-formed House Task Force on Election Procedures and Accountability.

“It was extremely disappointing to see the failure of the election system in St. Louis County that resulted in so many voters being turned away from their polling places,” Richardson said in a statement. “My hope is that Rep. Dogan and the members of his task force can thoroughly investigate the problems that occurred that day with the goal of ensuring they do not happen again in future elections.”

The task force comes after Secretary of State Jason Kander announced his own investigation into the election problems.

Dogan said he wanted the task force to begin immediately.

“Without question, voters deserve answers and deserve a better system that will not disenfranchise them,” Dogan said. “I will work with my colleagues to closely examine the mistakes that led to the Election Day debacle with the goal of ensuring the rights of voters are protected in the August and November elections, and in all elections going forward.”

The other representatives on the task force are as follows:

  • Jay Barnes, R-Jefferson City
  • Cloria Brown, R-St. Louis
  • Jason Chipman, R-Steelville
  • Marsha Haefner, R-St. Louis
  • Joe Don McGaugh, R-Carrollton
  • Jered Taylor, R-Nixa
  • Kevin Corlew, R-Kansas City
  • Pat Conway, D-St. Joseph
  • Courtney Curtis, D-Ferguson
  • Rochelle Walton Gray, D-Black Jack
  • Lauren Arthur, D-Kansas City.