Susan Torosian, Executive Policy Director for Elections Canada, expressed deep regret over the revelation that more than 200,000 mail-in ballots went uncounted in the September election, according to Blacklock’s Reporter. The number of mishandled ballot kits, either late, canceled, or deemed lost in transit, surpassed the margin of victory, fueling concerns of electoral fraud. Despite the magnitude of the issue, questions persist about Susan Torosian’s employment status in the face of such incompetence, demanding a closer examination.
In a report presented in Parliament, details emerged about the mishandling of ballot kits sent to 1,274,447 electors who opted for mail-in voting. Only 1,068,543 of these kits were returned and counted. The staggering difference of approximately 205,000 uncounted ballots included 90,000 labeled as “returned late and not counted” and an additional 114,583 that were never returned. To put this into perspective, the margin between Liberal and Conservative candidates nationwide was 190,790 votes.
Michel Roussel, the deputy chief electoral officer, acknowledged the validity of concerns about tight deadlines for mailing out ballots. “Five days, six days before the election date, that’s a tight deadline,” he conceded. This acknowledgment emphasizes the challenges faced by electors who applied for mail-in ballots but did not receive them in time to cast their votes, as previously documented by Blacklock’s during the September 20 election.
The report also shed light on other anomalies during Canada’s first pandemic election. One notable incident involved 1,589 special ballots from the Mississauga-Streetsville electoral district accumulating in a commercial mail room beyond the returning officer’s control. Due to their late arrival, these ballots were not counted.
Compounding the issues, disruptions in contracts with building owners who leased space to Elections Canada for polling stations led to the identification of new locations within a very short timeframe. This forced a 7% reduction in polling stations across Canada, resulting in bottlenecks and lineups on election day. In some cases, electors in 274 of 635 reserves had to travel to other towns to cast their votes, and the riding of Kenora, Ont., lacked election day polling stations in three First Nations communities.
The report highlighted the extensive complaints received by Elections Canada, totaling 9,410 as of December 14. The majority of these complaints pertained to accessibility, voter experience, long lines, interactions with poll workers, and issues related to voting by special ballot. The scale of these problems underscores the urgency for a thorough examination of accountability and potential legal consequences, particularly for individuals like Susan Torosian, given the seriousness of the allegations surrounding electoral fraud.