Yukon election followed the rules, lawyer for chief electoral officer tells court

Yukon election upheld

A lawyer for Yukon's top election official says the process to authorize a special ballot for a jailed voter in a riding where the Liberal incumbent lost her seat in a tie vote did not breach the territory's election rules.

Mark Wallace, the lawyer for chief electoral officer Maxwell Harvey, told the Supreme Court of Yukon that the Election Act allows for interpretation that safeguards elections and ensures people are not deprived of the right to vote.

Former health minister Pauline Frost tied in the riding of Vuntut Gwitchin with New Democrat Annie Blake, who was declared the winner after the drawing of lots, spurring Frost's court challenge alleging two people were ineligible to vote there.

Wallace told the court that adopting the petitioner's interpretation of the rules for identification and residency would disenfranchise homeless, incarcerated and transient voters,while threatening public confidence in the system.

James Tucker, a lawyer for Frost, has told the court the man imprisoned in Whitehorse indicated he wanted to vote in his home riding of Vuntut Gwitchin, and he was allowed to cast a special ballot without the required residency verification.

The results of April's election left Premier Sandy Silver's Liberals tied with the Yukon Party at eight seats each, but Silver struck an agreement with the NDP allowing him to form a minority government with support from the party's three members.

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