MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - State investigators are trying to figure out why Shelby County always seems to get elections wrong. The Tennessee Secretary of State called for an audit after confirming thousands of voters were given wrong ballots.
Right now, fingers are pointing at the Republican-run Shelby County Election Commission.
But election troubles go back at least a decade in Shelby County. Truth is the election commission has had problems under control of both the Republicans and the Democrats.
"There's no such thing as a perfect election but we want to get it as perfect as we can," stated Justin Joy, Chairman of the Shelby County Republican Party. He says the election commission is working to make sure Thursday's election goes smoothly. .
Republicans took over the Shelby County Election Commission in 2009 when the party took control of the legislature.
Truth is when Democrats controlled the election commission it also had big problems.
In 2006 candidates sued the election commission, citing voter irregularities. In 2005 a special election was voided after it was found ineligible felons and dead people cast ballots.
Under Republican control in 2010, another lawsuit was filed over voter irregularities.
Political analyst Berje Yacobian noted, "I don't think there is intention to cheat but I think there is some level of unpreparedness or incompetence."
Truth is, finger-pointing from the party not in control of the election commission has been going on for years. Each party makes accusations about what the other is doing.
"I think it's disgraceful we have political appointees in charge of the election commission," opined Yacoubian.
Truth is the government made it political and neither party wants to give up the ability to have that power.
In Yacoubian's opinion, "The election commission should be run by professional people who know how to run a computer system, look for problems and how to correct things immediately."
"I think it's right to demand a fair and accurate election, whether it's run by Democrats or Republicans," stated Van Turner with the Shelby County Democratic Party.
Politicos try to downplay the politics but truth is, politics are always there.
The bottom line is problems at the polls are so common in Shelby County voters aren't surprised. The big question is if the audit will improve election operations, or in the end will it be business as usual no matter which party is in charge.