3rd District Recount Ordered
From Staff and News Service Reports
BOSTON -- The recount in the Democratic primary for the 3rd Congressional District race -- with a mere 122 votes separating Lori Trahan and Daniel Koh -- was officially ordered by Secretary of State William Galvin Monday afternoon.
“The result might not change, but the numbers will change,” Galvin said at a press conference.
The recount is bound to focus on the 3,227 ballots that were counted as blank for the congressional race and whether the voters made any indication of a vote that wasn’t registered by local elections officials.
Galvin said in each town and city, elections officials have one week to recount the ballots, which will be bundled into packs of 50 and reviewed under the discriminating eyes of campaign officials. Reviewers can challenge any ballot to the Board of Elections and then in court.
“We have full confidence in Secretary of State Galvin and his office to oversee the recount process,” Trahan spokeswoman Gretchen Grosky said in an emailed statement Monday afternoon.
Earlier Monday, Trahan’s campaign said she was confident in her 122-vote lead and would not seek a recount.
“I’m thrilled by the newly-certified election results confirming that I’m the Democratic nominee for Congress in our community,” Trahan said in an emailed statement Monday morning.
Trahan, a Westford resident, and Koh, an Andover resident, had both filed signatures from communities around the district Friday as part of recount petitions. Koh’s campaign had focused on such communities as Haverhill, Methuen, Andover, Gardner and Fitchburg.
“Dan is committed to making sure all ballots are counted,” Koh’s campaign said in a statement Monday afternoon. “The closeness of the results out of 85,000 votes cast, the significant changes in vote counts in some communities, and the latest very serious concerns raised by Secretary of State Galvin make it abundantly clear that a recount is necessary to ensure everyone knows who won the election. We want the process to progress as swiftly as possible so that the ultimate nominee will have adequate time and resources to win in November.”
The process, designed to be transparent to voters and the campaigns, could drag on beyond the Sept. 17 deadline set by Galvin’s office if the campaigns are eager to challenge every questionable ballot.
Galvin said the recount needs to move quickly so his office can print ballots for the Nov. 6 election.
Results from 88,818 votes cast show Trahan in the lead with 18,527, ahead of Koh by 122 votes. These figures will be superseded by the recount.
Galvin -- criticized for scheduling the primary for the day after Labor Day -- said turnout was significant for the primaries. About 721,000 Democratic ballots and about 280,000 Republican ballots were cast in the primary, Galvin said.
“Considering all the concerns about date,” Galvin said, “obviously voters didn’t seem too troubled.”
In emailed statements from her campaign, Trahan said Monday she will fully cooperate with a recount. But as the presumptive winner, she’s looking toward the Nov. 6 general election, in which she will go up against Republican Rick Green of Pepperell.
“I respect the right of the Koh campaign to pursue a recount, but with the general election only 57 days away, I won’t wait another day to begin this general election campaign against a Republican millionaire who supports Donald Trump,” Trahan said in a statement. “Starting today, I will continue listening to voters and talking about why we need real change in Washington. We need a Congress that is on the side of working people and that treats women with respect.”
This report was compiled by Sun staffer Alana Melanson and Brian Dowling of the Boston Herald.