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The Latest: Ballot collection to begin for historic tally

November 7, 2018
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Democrat Jared Golden, left, joined by wife Isobel, right, speaks to supporters as they wait for results in the 2nd Congressional District election, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018, in Lewiston, Maine. (AP Photo/Joel Page)

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Latest on 2nd Congressional District race (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

Couriers will soon traverse Maine to collect materials needed to start the process of tallying the winner of Maine’s historic 2nd Congressional District race.

A spokeswoman for Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap says trucks will roll on Thursday to start collecting memory sticks and ballots from cities and towns across the state.

She says the process of tabulating the votes will start Friday and likely conclude next week.

Neither Republican U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin nor Democratic challenger Jared Golden exceeded 50 percent of first-round votes in the four-candidate race, which triggers a ranked-choice tallying.

Maine’s new voting method is being used in a U.S. House race for the first time in American history.

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12:35 p.m.

Additional tabulations under Maine’s new voting system are needed to determine the winner of Maine’s 2nd Congressional District race between Republican U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin and Democrat Jared Golden.

Neither candidate collected a majority of first-place votes under Maine’s ranked-choice voting system, which was used for the first time Tuesday in U.S. House and Senate races.

That’s triggering additional voting rounds in which last-place finishers in the four-way race are eliminated and the votes are reallocated.

Secretary of State Matt Dunlap said those calculations, aided by computers, will take place next week. He’s not committing to a specific timeline.

The race was the most expensive Congressional contest in Maine history, and about 150 votes separated Poliquin and Golden.

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6:40 a.m.

It might be a while before a winner is determined in the race between Republican U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin and Democrat Jared Golden to represent Maine’s 2nd Congressional District.

The race looks as if it could be the first time a member of Congress is elected by way of a ranked-choice ballot.

Neither Poliquin nor Golden was closing in on a majority of first-round votes as results trickled in early Wednesday in a four-way race.

If no one wins a majority, last-place finishers are eliminated and the votes are reallocated. The ranked-choice system was being used for the first time in U.S. House and Senate races in Maine.

The race was the most expensive Congressional contest in Maine history.

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