False Michigan Election Results Posted By WWMT Channel 3 in Kalamazoo
False election results posted due to 'human error' have a local television station apologizing and has prompted the Michigan Secretary of State's Office to issue a 'fact check' about the issue.
Are the election results for Michigan available?
As the primary election for the state isn't slated to take place until August 2nd, so results are not available. But some erroneous publishing of test results by television station WWMT Channel 3 in Kalamazoo had people very confused over the weekend.
What was published by WWMT Channel 3?
Channel 3 made a statement on Monday the 25th and says that the results were part of a test and that the numbers were 'randomly generated':
In advance of Michigan’s Tuesday, Aug. 2 primary election, News Channel 3 was conducting [sic] a test of its election systems last week. In doing so, the station inadvertently published mock results on WWMT.com. The numbers used were randomly generated and did not reflect actual results.
The results showed multiple posted results, including the Republican primary race for governor, three US House Primaries, and a host of other races in the state. You can still see the web cache of the posting online.
What did the Michigan Secretary of State say about the false election results?
The Michigan Secretary of State issued a 'fact check' on Monday to clarify that these results are false and were the result of human error:
Supposed “results” of the Aug. 2 Michigan primary election from WWMT TV-3 appearing online and in Google search results are not real. No votes have been counted in the election. When contacted by the Department of State, WWMT representatives said the news channel was running tests that news media routinely conduct ahead of every election to ensure accuracy on their own website pages when the site was accidentally made live. News media often test their webpages with sample data ahead of elections to ensure they will function properly on election night. Online sites that regularly spread conspiracy theories, misinformation and other falsehoods have unsurprisingly seized on this as evidence of something nefarious when it is nothing more than human error by an organization that has nothing to do with election administration.