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Recounts completed for Des Moines, Warren counties following 'technical difficulties'

Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate tweeted early Wednesday morning that Des Moines and Warren counties needed to recount votes immediately.

DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowans in Warren, Des Moines and Linn counties have unofficial election results from Tuesday night after Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate said the counties experienced "technical problems."

Pate called on Des Moines and Warren counties to conduct administrative recounts as soon as possible. A tweet from early Wednesday morning noted Linn County was still uploading absentee numbers.

As of Thursday evening, all recounts have been completed and all Iowa counties are reporting results from Tuesday night. Pate's office said approximately 2,000 ballots in Warren County and 800 ballots in Des Moines County were uncounted before the recount. 

“It is vital we ensure every ballot is counted and the process is open and transparent,” Pate said in Thursday's press release. “Important checks and balances are in place to protect the integrity of the vote and my thanks to these counties for taking the time to make sure we get it right. The integrity of Iowa’s elections is my top priority.”

Results for these counties were not available overnight Tuesday due to these issues. Pate said these delays impacted around 30,000 ballots. 

According to Des Moines County Auditor Terri Johnson, the issue was discovered after scanning ballots into their election machine—specifically, absentee ballots. When they exported the data for processing, it seemed like not all of it came through. While they had 4,431 ballots to count, only about 3,600 actually showed up in the results. 

And that recount could decide who represents House District 99 at the Iowa Legislature. Johnson said that her office had counted 4,324 votes for incumbent Democrat Dennis Cohoon and 4,767 for Republican candidate Matt Rinker.  

Meanwhile in Linn County, Pate's office said more than 600 absentee ballots had been received by the county office at the time polls closed, which was 8 p.m. Tuesday. His office noted the discrepancy was revealed "during one of the many reconciliation processes our office completes prior to the county and state canvasses."

"The Linn County Auditor’s Office did not follow the basic review process recommended by the Secretary of State’s Office in multiple trainings to county auditors," Pate's office said in a release on Thursday. "Failure to verify their totals against the absentee precinct board’s election night results before publishing was the cause of the issue. It has now been corrected."

Some voters missed their opportunity to vote for county supervisor when election officials inadvertently left the candidate names off their ballots. Linn County Auditor Joel Miller said the error was made when ballots were sent to printers more than a month ago.

RELATED: County supervisor names left off ballot in Linn County, Iowa race

The State Board of Canvassers will convene on Dec. 5 to certify the state's election. Results are unofficial until then. 

RELATED: Election takeaways: No sweep for the Republicans after all

RELATED: Kim Reynolds wins reelection in Iowa governor's race, AP says

Watch more election night coverage on News 8's YouTube channel

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