I wonder what will happen next!
You guys, the race to represent New York’s 22nd Congressional District keeps finding ways to outdo itself.
Now a stained ballot might help determine the race. No, it’s not like the blue dress. No one knows if the stain is blood or chocolate.
Republican challenger Claudia Tenney challenged six absentee ballots, including one with a stain on the back:
Tenney’s lawyers said the mark on the back of the ballot could be chocolate or blood. If it was blood, her lawyers maintained, the ballot should be disqualified because it could be used to identify the voter and violate the person’s right to a secret ballot.
Herkimer County Attorney Lorraine Lewandrowski told a judge presiding over the ballot count today that the Tenney campaign had dropped its objections.
“It is the intention of the (election) commissioners to canvass that particular ballot and include that vote in updated vote figures to be presented to the court,” Lewandrowski wrote in a letter.
But hours later, Tenney lawyer Paul DerOhannesian II wrote to the judge to say the campaign has not dropped its challenge to the stained ballot.
DerOhannesian asked state Supreme Court Justice Scott J. DelConte to make sure the ballot is not counted until he can review it and determine whether it’s a valid vote.
Tenney had a huge lead on election night over incumbent Democratic Rep. Anthony Brindisi. But the fiasco brought on by uncounted ballots, ballots without sticky notes, and ballots found all over the place switched the lead to Brindisi and then Tenney.
Tenney only heads by 12 votes.
New York Supreme Court Justice Scott DelConte refused to declare a winner earlier this week. He decided to put everyone back at the beginning and start all over.
Syracuse.com summed it up perfectly:
The stained ballot had come to symbolize the circus-like atmosphere of an election marked by a series of dramatic developments, including counting mistakes, misplaced ballots and lost sticky notes from election officials that fell off disputed ballots.
Voter rights advocates say the dispute over blood or chocolate is also a prime example of the kinds of frivolous challenges lawyers for candidates made in close elections this year.
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