LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office responded Wednesday after President Donald Trump tweeted out a video of drop box collection taken the day after the election.
RE: videos clips of ballots being collected from #LACounty Official Vote by Mail Drop Boxes — Yes, they are ballots; valid, legally cast ballots collected and processed by authorized election officials in accordance with the California Elections Code. #VoteSafe2020 pic.twitter.com/4q4pwmnN9K
— Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk (@LACountyRRCC) November 11, 2020
The response came after the president tweeted a video — filmed Nov. 4 — seemingly questioning the validity of mail-in ballots and the election process, garnering a warning from Twitter that read, “Learn how voting by mail is safe and secure.”
You are looking at BALLOTS! Is this what our Country has come to? pic.twitter.com/cI2ZTItqUi
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 11, 2020
In the video, the person filming walks up to two men collecting ballots from an official Los Angeles County ballot drop box and asks questions that seem to cast doubt on the validity of the ballots, the election results and those doing the collection.
“What we’re seeing in these videos is actually evidence of the system working exactly as it should,” Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School, said.
The day after the video was taken, the registrar’s office took to Twitter to respond to questions surrounding the ballot collection.
All Drop Boxes were closed and locked at 8PM on Election Night and ballots were collected the following day. These are valid ballots that will be processed and counted during the post-election canvass — like all outstanding vote by mail ballots.
— Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk (@LACountyRRCC) November 5, 2020
In a statement issued Wednesday, the office reiterated that the ballots were properly cast and collected and would be processed and counted.
“All Official Ballot Drop Boxes were closed on Election Day at 8pm and the scheduled ballot collection took place the following day. The ballots in the footage are valid ballots that will be processed and tallied in our Official Election Canvass. Additionally, the individuals in the video are Registrar staff.”
“The rule is you have until 8 p.m. on election night — you either postmark your ballot by Election Day, you go into a polling place or you use an official ballot drop box,” Levinson said. “But, if we didn’t count those ballots, we’d be going against what the law says, and we’d be disenfranchising a lot of valid votes.”
Since Election Day, the registrar’s office has been posting daily updates on its website with the latest returns and an estimated number of outstanding ballots left to be processed.