Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Dem Manor candidate calls on governor to intervene in election count due to irregularities

Editor’s note: This letter to Gov. Kathy Hochul was provided by Mark Cardwell, Democratic candidate for the Village of Pelham Manor Board of Trustees. Cardwell also sent the letter to County Executive George Latimer.

via electronic mail 

Dear Governor Kathy Hochul, 

I am writing to request your urgent assistance with an election issue that’s occurring in the Village of  Pelham Manor today. I was a candidate for Village Trustee, and after a hard-fought campaign, I was  looking forward to my neighbors registering their choices in yesterday’s election. 

Unfortunately, the tallying of the vote has now been marred by a series of irregularities.


  • Hundreds of absentee and early ballots were not counted yesterday. Machines malfunctioned, tearing a selection of them. Some ballots were opened, while others have not been. 
  • The handling of early and absentee ballots was, at the minimum, inconsistent. As they arrived,  instead of being secured, they were left unattended on tables, put in shopping bags, and handled by a variety of people, including a lawyer for one of the candidates. 
  • The counting of these ballots was also concerning. Instead of the standard three-step process—verify the ballot; open the ballot; count the ballot—the election administrators oversaw what  appeared to be a free-for-all process, with some ballots being counted (through the broken  machines) before all ballots were even verified.  
  • This situation allowed for several discrepancies in the legal validation process. In one incident, a  candidate himself sent a text message to a poll watcher who then pressured an inspector to reverse a decision about a previously invalidated ballot. 
  • The uncounted ballots are currently in a box being supervised by a police officer—despite the  fact that the Police Commissioner is one of the candidates in the election. 
  • Hundreds of these absentee ballots were distributed and collected by just a couple of  individuals, one with deep ties to the local Republican Party and another the spouse of a trustee.  While “mass harvesting” is not necessarily illegal in New York, it is in direct contradiction to our  county policies which wisely limit any single individual to just five ballots a day. And as you know,  ballot harvesting is a felony in some states.
  • With some of the ballots being opened and not yet counted, it’s now impossible to trace and verify their provenance. 

Obviously mistakes happen and machines malfunction — but this situation is particularly troubling as the entire election is conducted and certified by the village government itself.  

The Village Manager supervising this election has been hired by the incumbent candidates, all Republicans. In turn, she has hired an attorney who also represents the local Republican Party. Last night, in the midst of the counting crisis, these two officials sequestered themselves to compose a plan.  

Let me be clear: I am not alleging illegal activity at this point, but this is not the way elections should be  run in New York. We all have a right and a vested interest in maintaining the integrity of our elections.  It’s why I’ve advocated for our Village elections to be conducted by Westchester County—as is done by most every other Village around us. Stubbornly, our Village insists on doing the job themselves, resulting  in the situation we’re witnessing now. 

As the highest-ranking constitutional officer in our state, you are passionate about upholding the integrity of our elections, no matter how small or local they might be. Right now, I respectfully request you make every effort to ensure free and fair elections in Pelham Manor. 


Mark Cardwell 

Pelham Manor

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  • J

    Joe GrannMar 22, 2024 at 9:07 am

    Funny how ballet harvesting when done in Blue cities across America is deemed acceptable by Democrats as it benefits them.