Some of the writing in the aftermath of Thursday's developments in the Supreme Court race was either ignorant in cynical. Charges that votes were found, went unreported or were "manipulated" by the county clerk on her personal computer are demonstrably false. No ballotes were discovered. No votes were counted on Thursday that had not been counted on election night. No votes went unreported on election night although some were not included in the aggregate total reported to the AP. Whatever Kathy Nickolaus did or did not do on her personal computer is wholly without official impact. The votes that count reflected on ballots that were removed from the machines and secured on Tuesday evening along with absentee ballots that were also counted and sealed. Nothing on Kathy Nickolaus' computer has anything to do with the certified vote totals. Anyone who says otherwise doesn't know what he or she is talking about it.
I fully appreciate that there are some people who don't care because lies or feigned ignorance is useful. There are others for whom the truth long ago disappeared into an ideological haze. I am more concerned about otherwise responsible members of the press - people who ought to know better - who retreat into the passive voice - "questions have been raised" - or a studied agnosticism - "some say" - to avoid grappling with actually happened. We hear that this "looks bad." That is no substitute for addressing whether it is is bad.
There is no doubt that Ms. Nickolaus' error hurt the process. But misstatements or obfuscations of what happened hurt it as well.