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Friday, December 09 2022

Florida’s Senate race heads to a hand recount

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Miami:The Florida Senate race in the US midterm elections was headed to a hand recount after a machine review of the initial vote kept Democratic Senator Bill Nelson narrowly behind his challenger, Republican Governor Rick Scott.

But even though a recount will keep Nelson in the fight for at least another few days, his odds of winning might have been further narrowed on Thursday, when the machine recount, which ended at the 3 p.m. deadline, yielded a few dozen more votes for Scott, whose lead now stands at more than 12,600, or 0.15 per cent, reports CNN.

The race for Governor remained outside the 0.25 per cent margin required for a hand recount, meaning Republican former Representative Ron DeSantis will likely be the state’s next chief executive over Democrat Andrew Gillum.

The Tallahassee mayor, who picked up a single vote in the recount, revoked his concession last week and said on Thursday he would continue to push for all votes to be counted.

Election boards across the state have been using voting machines to recount ballots this week, with some of the larger counties working all day and through the night.

When Thursday’s deadline hit, three statewide races — the contests between Nelson and Scott for Senate; Gillum and DeSantis for governor; and Republican Matt Caldwell and Democrat Nikki Fried for agriculture commissioner — were within the .5 per cent margin required for a statewide machine recount.

Both the Senate and agricultural commissioner races were now headed to hand review of overvotes and undervotes, a more narrowly circumscribed but also potentially volatile pool of votes.

The deadline for completing the manual recount of the Senate contest’s votes is Sunday.

The latest results do not include the recount conducted in Palm Beach County, which has a sizable Democratic majority, since – election authorities there said – they were having to use “obsolete” machinery that kept breaking down and erasing recounted votes and consequently they could not finish by the Thursday deadline.

Meanwhile, Broward and Miami-Dade Counties, two of the most populous Florida counties, had announced that they had finished their recounts, and 58 other counties of the state’s 67 counties were reported to have completed their recounts as well.

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