Entries in Vote Count (4)


Iowa GOP to Announce Final Caucus Results

Scott Olson/Getty Images(DES MOINES, Iowa) -- On Thursday morning, voters will finally know who won the Iowa caucuses.

Since Mitt Romney edged Rick Santorum by a mere eight votes on caucus night two weeks ago, Iowa’s counties and precincts have submitted forms to document their vote totals to the Iowa Republican Party, which has been helping them prepare the official precinct counts.

On caucus night, precinct officials phoned in results to an automated system after they’d counted the votes by hand.  As the last precincts reported their votes, the tally swung back and forth into the wee hours of Jan. 4.

But Thursday’s results are final, and Santorum could be crowned Iowa’s real winner.  An anonymous campaign source told The Washington Examiner Monday that Santorum led by around 80 votes at the time.

The Iowa GOP will announce the final results at 9:15 a.m. ET on Thursday.

By now, though, it may not matter whether Santorum officially won.  The candidate and major media outlets have already declared Iowa an effective tie, and Iowa does not award delegates to any candidate.  Unlike for most states, Iowa’s delegates to the Republican National Convention are free to support whichever candidate they choose, and the state will not select those delegates until June.

If Santorum wins Iowa in the official count, the boost will be emotional and psychological.  That could help him as he heads into the South Carolina primary this Saturday if it legitimizes him in the eyes of any on-the-fence voters there.  But it will not likely help him to raise money: While Santorum raised a flood of cash after his strong Iowa showing, he’s already missed out on any extra donations he would have attracted in the following days, had the Iowa GOP announced him the winner in the early morning hours of Jan. 4.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Joe Miller Takes Legal Challenge to Alaska Supreme Court

Photo Courtesy - Joe Miller for U.S. Senate(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) -- It’s been more than a month since the midterm election, but Alaska Senate candidate Joe Miller isn’t giving up the fight against incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

The Tea Party-backed candidate filed an appeal Monday in the Alaska Supreme Court, three days after a lower court ruled against him and declared that write-in ballots that showed voter intent for Murkowski can be counted, even if they were misspelled.

Miller has argued that the elections division bent state law by allowing such ballots to be counted.

"We have consistently asserted that the law should be followed strictly,” Miller said in a statement. “The fact that the legislature stated that there should be ‘no exceptions’ to the ballot counting method is what, in our view, should govern this matter. Under the current ruling, there are now over 8,000 exceptions, a result everyone who favors the rule of law should question."

Miller is demanding that all of his ballots that were tabulated by a machine also be hand-counted, like those of Murkowski’s.

The last count by the state elections board showed Murkowski leading Miller by more than 10,000 votes.

Murkowski declared victory on Dec. 17, but Miller’s legal challenges have kept the elections board from certifying the result. If that doesn’t happen by the start of the new Congress in January, the Senate could convene with one member short.

Last week, Alaska’s other senator, Democrat Mark Begich, called on Miller to “put Alaska interests ahead of personal ambition” and drop the challenge against Murkowski.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Alaska Senate Race Remains in Limbo

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(JUNEAU, Alaska) -- The Alaska Elections Division is now in its sixth day of counting write-in ballots, but there’s little clarity as to which candidate will emerge victorious in the high-profile race for the U.S. Senate seat.

As of Sunday night, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, had 89.3 percent of the votes, with eight percent of votes that were challenged and counted.

The results could come down to just a handful of votes, which means Republican candidate Joe Miller is fighting every vote that could be deemed questionable. The Tea Party-favored candidate currently has 87,517 votes while Murkowski has 78,697.

Miller, who has Sarah Palin’s support, has continued to assail the elections division for counting misspelled ballots that show voter intent, even though a judge last week struck down his attempts to stop the ballot counting.

"We need one standard for everyone,” Miller said in a statement. “It makes no sense to create all these new exceptions just for Lisa Murkowski. I have said from the beginning, I want a fair election and I want the law followed. I don't think that is too much to ask."

This week, the elections division will also start counting absentee ballots, estimated to be between 8,600 to 8,800.

Murkowski on Monday returned to Washington, D.C. even as the battle for her Senate seat raged on thousands of miles away.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio 


House Candidates in Undecided Races Beg for More Cash, Volunteers

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Razor thin vote margins in several congressional districts where Republican challengers are hoping to knock off a few more incumbent Democrats have campaigns on both sides mobilizing for a fight.

Renee Elmers, the Tea Party and Palin-backed candidate in North Carolina’s second district, leads her opponent Democrat Rep. Bob Etheridge by around 1,600 votes. But Etheridge is not backing down.

“We really feel with the way the trend is going now that we’re going to win this race,” he said Thursday.

Elmers is not taking any chances, telling supporters in a fundraising letter Thursday that she’s hiring 11 attorneys to monitor the vote count in each of the district’s counties – all to the tune of at least $50,000.

“I never dreamed I’d be asking you for another donation two days after the election – but I need to raise $50,000 ‘yesterday,’” she says.

The NRCC apparently declined to help foot the bill; but Sarah Palin has begun riding to the rescue. “SarahPAC help is on the way for @Renee4Congress recount fund. Will other PACs join us? How about Beltway GOP?” Palin tweeted Friday.

Meanwhile, in Arizona’s 8th district where Republican challenger Jesse Kelly trails Democrat Rep. Gabrielle Giffords by roughly 3,000 votes, the call is out for volunteers to hover over county election officials as they make their final tallies.

“We need volunteers to observe the ballot counting in Pima Co. Plz contact Lynne [number withheld] if you are near Country Club and Valencia,” Kelly tweeted Friday.

Republican businessman Keith Fimian, who’s trying for a second time to unseat freshman Democrat Rep. Gerry Connolly in Virginia’s 11th district, is also begging for donations and volunteers to wage his fight to the bitter end, even though he’s behind by 900 votes.

 “This process has required us to hire an experienced election lawyer and continue paying staff to engage a strike force of several dozen volunteers who are vigilantly monitoring the process for us,” Fimian spokesman Tim Edson said in a fundraising email.

And in California, where anyone who wants a recount must pay for it themselves, trailing candidates in two House races are likely mulling the fees they may have to fork over in the days ahead.   In Alameda County, as the Mercury News notes, a recount requires a $5,000 deposit and up to $1,500 a day.

Republican David Harmer trails incumbent Rep. Jerry McNerney by around 500 votes in the state’s 11th district, while Democratic Rep. Jim Costa is staring down a 2,000-vote gap with Republican Andy Vidak in the 20th district.

Five other House races – IL-08, KY-06, NY-25, TX-27, WA-02 – are awaiting final vote counts and certification by state election officials before potential recounts or legal challenges could ensue.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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