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The passion of lifting up the skills of election workers, both insiders and deputized, is what drives me in giving lectures on this subject every election. Doing these talks has become more than just a personal habit. It has evolved into a spirited advocacy to make all electoral stakeholders aware of the nuances of ballot appreciation. While seemingly a minor concern, it takes the central stage if looked upon as something that makes or breaks political fortunes. Along the way, I have gathered notes that, then and now, serve as a ready resource provided to querying friends on the Bench, those in the Bar, and to professors and students of law as well. This book is a collection of those notes and the hard copy of those discourses.

Section 211 (Rules for the Appreciation of Ballots) of the Omnibus Election Code of the Philippines, with all its 28 para-graphs, is the primary source of this book. Mindful, however, of the difficulty of reading it sequentially, I have endeavored to fashion a more methodical order of these rules. Experience tells that this initiative has found significant acceptance as there is now more logic and coherence in the arrangement of the rules. It is wished that the reader would find ease and leisure in navigating this book as thus arranged.

One may wonder, as I initially did, if this is a pioneering effort to collate all constitutional, jurisprudential, and statutory teachings on ballot appreciation. No, it is not. In 1934 Jose P. Laurel authored the book “Rules on the Appreciation of Ballots: Covering All Decisions of the Philippine Supreme Court on the Subject to Data, Published and Unpublished and Leading Authorities in the U.S.” Securing a copy of it would have certainly enhanced the contents of this book. None, however, was available.

To dispel the prevailing notion that the appreciation of ballots pertains only to manual elections, I incorporated a chapter on automated elections. Despite the modern ramifications, one may find that the basic principles remain unchanged.


If this book finds its way to the Election Officers of the Com-mission on Elections who do the training of teachers on this subject matter, to the teachers who must do the exacting job of appreciating the votes at the precinct level, to the candidates and voters for their enlightenment, to the practicing lawyers, judges and law students, then the desires of this book have been attained.

Author(s)Dennis I. Ausan
Page count160
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