Over the past week, about 9,000 absentee ballots have been counted in the critical Senate race between Republican George Amedore and Democrat Cecilia Tkaczyk.
In the race between Democrat Terry Gipson and Republican incumbent Stephen Saland in the Hudson Valley? Only about 640 absentee ballots had been counted as of this afternoon in the 41st Senate District race.
That’s roughly 7 percent of the 9,700 absentees returned to the Dutchess County Board of Elections, said Democratic elections commissioner Fran Knapp.
“They are continuing to make a lot of challenges, and they are mainly to Democratic voters,” Knapp said.
Republican county commissioner Eric Haight said the county is moving as fast as the lawyers for both sides will let them. Gipson holds about a 1,700-vote lead — a lead which will be difficult for Saland to overcome.
“We’re going the pace the attorneys have set for the respective campaigns,” Haight said.
Knapp said the county has had to hire as many as eight part-time workers at $14.50 an hour to make copies of upwards of 40,000 pieces of papers at the request of the lawyers. Representatives from both sides have to be at the copy machine according to court order, she said.
“I don’t know what the strategy is. We can’t figure it out,” Knapp said.
She said Republicans are challenging some voters’ ballots in situations where those voters’ cases had been brought to court in previous legal challenges.
Haight said it’s not his fault: They are under court order to let the lawyers go at it.
Democrats today accused Republicans of slow playing the results.
“We’re going as fast the lawyers will let us,” he said.