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Lehman lead widens as Wanggaard ponders recount

By   /   June 12, 2012  /   4 Comments

By Kirsten Adshead | Wisconsin Reporter

MADISON — Anyone seeking resolution in the state Senate recall race pitting Van Wanggaardagainst John Lehman will have to wait a bit longer.

Lehman’s lead now stands at 834 votes after the official canvassing of the votes Tuesday.

Wanggaard, however, has not conceded defeat, and he has three days to decide whether to request a recount.

“The Wanggaard campaign will be considering its options regarding a recount over the coming days, and will make an announcement on its plans by the end of the week,” Dan Romportl, director of the Committee to Elect a Republican Senate, said in a statement. “CERS and the Wanggaard campaign have no further comment at this time.”

Lehman, the former Democratic senator who lost the Senate District 21 seat to Wanggaard in 2010, gained 55 votes from the election night tally, when the Racine County election officials canvassed the vote Tuesday.

The recall elections were held June 5, but election officials could not provide the official tally until provisional ballots were addressed and all absentee ballots were in. Absentee ballots had to be postmarked no later than election day, but were accepted through this past Friday.

If Lehman’s victory stands, it would be a crucial win for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, giving the party a 17-16 majority in the state Senate.

Still, the impact may be limited.

Lawmakers are not scheduled to return to session until after the November general election, when either party could take control of the Senate and the state Assembly. Half the state Senate seats and all of the state Assembly seats are up for election.

The Wanggaard-Lehman contest is one of six recalls Democrats pursued, but the GOP easily won the other races, including the recall of Gov. Scott Walker.

State law allows either candidate to request a recount, but the candidate has to help pay for the cost of the recount if the margin of victory is less than one half of 1 percent of the total votes.

Lehman’s margin of victory is twice that, so Wanggaard would have to pay some of the cost of the recount, $5 per ward, according to the Associated Press.

Lehman did not immediately return a message seeking comment Tuesday.

But his campaign cheered the canvassing results, via Twitter, saying, “Official County Canvass shows we won by 834 votes! Thank you to all our hard working clerks and election workers throughout Racine County.”

 

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  • Edward Perkins

    From what I have learned from an election observer there is provable vote fraud in the Wanggaard election. In one incident the police issued a $400 citation against one of Lehmans supporters for physically threatening a Wanggaard voter. People were being brought by busses in large numbers that many believe were not elegible to vote. I say that CERS had better show its “stuff” and fight this activity or it needs to understand fold up your tent and go home permanently! Don’t solicit me for anymore more for CERS if it refuses to act.

  • WI VOTER

    Time for a full Independant Investigation with on-the-spot arrest authority for any impropriaties found concerning “anyone” in that district…

    Let them plead their cases in State and Federal court’s, as there are laws that, perhaps, may have been broken under both jurisdictions!

    RECALL Elections in Wisconsin… What a huge cluster f_ _ _, and a complete waste of our time and a huge chunk of our tax dollars!

    GOOD LUCK!

  • Jim

    I used to investigate fraud for the Defense Department – so I’ve gotten to the point where I can smell fraud a thousand miles away. I smell fraud!!

    Jim

  • WI VOTER

    At least 100 unsigned votes that have already been scanned cannot be taken out of the count because they are not numbered to match the number assigned to the “Registered Voter that did not sign” and random votes would have to be taken out to make repairs for this slight oversight by pricinct workers.

    I say lets have a “revote” in the 21st district with only those two names on the ballot.

    Before any vote can be run through the machine the voter registration and signature must be verified by at least 3 people that are sworn to uphold the voting laws or be subject to the fullest extent of those laws. Those three people must legibily sign the pages that they are “responsible” for. If there are any irregularities, they must pay the costs of court and whatever their punishment is determined to be for their irresponsibility…however slight!

    This kind of willful sloppiness must not be tolerated at all anywhere in our state!

    No matter which party is at fault…!