Republican Lenny Mirra has said he will “absolutely” legally challenge the verdict after the recounted vote made the overall result narrowed the vote deficit to one. The candidates were competing for a seat in the North Shore area, an area between Boston and New Hampshire.
On Thursday, the town of Topsfield in Massachusetts finished recounting their ballots to show the results were 11,763 for Democrats and 11,762 for Republicans.
Before the recount, the Republican candidate Lenny Mirra led by ten votes after 23,000 ballots were cast in the US midterm election until the Secretary of State William F Galvin ordered the recount.
Deb O’Malley, a spokesperson for the Secretary of State’s office, said the decision of the board of registrars in the recount of each town’s vote is subject to a review by a court if a court challenge is to be issued.
Mr Mirra, who was the five-term incumbent before the election, has said he will be challenging the verdict, and will likely focus on the number of contested ballots.
In an interview with the Boston Globe, Mr Mirra said: “Some were filled out in pencil, some were filled out with different coloured ink, some had stray marks. Some had a name written in the write-in and then an oval filled out.”
The Republican candidate also believes that the updated voting map played a part in the narrow election.
He said to CBS: “I got totally screwed in this redistricting. I lost five of my seven towns. Usually, a rep district changes by maybe five percent or 10 percent.
“It’s an unheard-of amount of change for my district. It was devastating because it’s like starting all over. There was no benefit to being the incumbent because we were a complete unknown in these new towns.”
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The updated results of the race will now go to Governor Charlie Baker as well as the Governor’s Council to review, and the officials are set to meet next Wednesday.
Massachusetts offered a temporary mail-in voting system during the Covid pandemic in 2020 for the first time and this was voted to make it permanent this year while also expanding early voting, which Republican candidate Mr Mirra voted against.
Democrat Ms Kassner described the election as a “roller coaster” and said: “With such a tight margin, it’s hard to allow yourself to be too excited until the plane is landed.
“Until the end of today, it’s been holding your breath, it’s definitely been a roller coaster.”