By an incredibly thin margin, Congressman Allen West is behind his Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy in his congressional race. Murphy has already claimed victory, with his campaign publicly doubting that West will be able to make up the difference, but West is calling for a recount in one county that West’s campaign says made the difference in the incredibly close race.
West, a conservative freshman with national Tea Party popularity, won a fairly safe conservative district in 2010, but since he was sworn in, his district was gerrymandered and became far more competitive for the outspoken Republican. After a long and contentious campaign, Murphy appeared to be be victorious, with a lead around 2000 votes.
But West is not willing to let his seat go without a fight, and his campaign is contesting the results and demanding a recount. According to Reuters, Murphy’s win was outside the margin that would normally “trigger an automatic recount under Florida rules,” but West’s campaign is arguing some votes were not counted properly.
[West campaign manager Tim Edson] called for a recount of St. Lucie County ballots, claiming West held a district-wide lead of nearly 2,000 votes until St. Lucie County conducted a recount of thousands of early ballots, leaving West behind by 2,400 votes.
“We will continue to fight to ensure every vote is counted properly and fairly, and accordingly will pursue all legal means necessary,” Edson said.
The race for Florida’s 18th district was one of the most expensive in the country, with PAC money from both sides flooding in. West raised five times as much as Murphy.
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