Dist. 20 Primary Recount Monday; Beasley, Dist. 53, Asks for Recount
By Judi Finn
The Republican primary recount in Senate District 20 is scheduled for 9 a.m. June 21 in the crime lab in Augusta to determine if the June 8 outcome stands. The recorded results give Dana Dow of Waldoboro a slim lead over Les Fossel of Alna.
“We confirmed the result to be an 18 vote difference on Friday,” said Deputy Secretary of State Julie Flynn, and that is less than the one percent of the total votes cast, the requirement for an automatic recount.
Dow received 1871 votes to Fossel’s 1853 in all Lincoln County towns except Dresden and in Windsor, Washington and Friendship. Flynn said she spoke to Fossel who then faxed a formal request to the state.
The state police are in charge of retrieving the ballots from the town offices and Flynn said the paper ballots are already sorted into packets of 50s, whereas the ballots from machines in Boothbay, Boothbay Harbor, Jefferson and Wiscasset will have to have the referendum and primary votes separated. Flynn is optimistic the counting will be completed on Monday.
Both Dow and Fossel a counter for the team that does the collating and each may have an attorney present, Flynn said. “Each side brings their own counters.” When completed, the candidates sign off on the tabulations.
There are two other House primary races set for recounts and one Senate primary race, Flynn said.
The Lincoln County News election chart numbers for Republicans Heather Beasley of Dresden and Billie Willard of Alna in the House District 53 race were transposed in the Dresden results. Beasley received 66 votes and Willard 77. This did not change the outcome of the race but gave Willard a 31 vote lead as opposed to a 19 vote lead.
Though the difference does not meet the percentage criteria for an automatic recount, Beasley said Tuesday she would give the state the required, nonrefundable $500 deposit for a recount by the 5 p.m. deadline. “I don’t think my mind will be at ease until it is done,” she said, win or lose.
She specifically noted the count in Wiscasset where there was a problem with a voting machine. Beasley received 202 votes to Willard’s 199 votes in Wiscasset.
Wiscasset Town Clerk Sandy Johnson confirmed Tuesday that 12 or 15 ballots were jammed in the machine but registered as counted. A call to the voting machine vendor verified there was no need to re the ballots for counting in spite of the jam, according to Johnson.
“I would prefer to have a more accurate accounting,” said Beasley. She conferred with her advisors, the same people who approached her in October to run in the Republican primary, and they urged her to get a second tally. “I’m concerned with the electronic tally,” she said.