Florida election officials in St. Luce County started on Sunday a full recount of early votes in the disputed congressional between Republican Allen West and Democrat Party challenger Patrick Murphy.
The “emergency meeting” ordered by the St. Lucie County Canvassing Board started at 7am local time, reports FOX News. An estimated 37,000 early votes will be recounted.
An elections summary report shows more ballots were cast than there are registered voters – 249095 cards for 175554 voters, or 141.89-percent. The percentage seems to be double the actual turnout. The Cards Cast was double added but not the votes as they add up.
West campaign refused to concede the race when officials declared Murphy the winner last Wednesday morning, citing voting irregularities in St. Luce and Palm Beach counties. Tea Party supporters who oversaw ballot counting in several locations declared Congressman West the winner on Saturday morning, despite published reports later that day claiming Murphy had won.
The West campaign alleged a “recount” of votes in St. Lucie County saw the congressman move from a 2,400 vote lead to lagging behind his Democrat challenger by 2,000 ballots.
“There are possible irregularities in St. Lucie County,” claims Jeffrey Scott Shapiro, a Florida lawyer volunteering for the West campaign. “On Sunday we’ll have a chance to recount the early votes and that’s a good start to preserving the integrity of the democratic process.”
The West campaign said in a Saturday statement it was pleased with the news of the partial recount.
“This decision should help shed light on the situation of this election,” the statement said. “This is the action we were seeking to ensure the results of this election were fair and accurate.”
The West campaign had said earlier Saturday that issues with the voting in St. Lucie County meant the race was still undecided.
“Late on Election Night, Congressman West led by 1,700 votes,” West for Congress said in a statement. “Following the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections’ decision to recount thousands of early ballots after a technical glitch, the margin shifted by 4,000. In order to ensure that votes were not doubled counted, we have requested that the St. Lucie Supervisor of Elections make public the poll check-in books to ensure the numbers of ballots cast matches the numbers of voters checked-in at the polls.”
In addition to the state ballots, absentee and an estimated 8,000 military overseas votes remain uncounted.