Judge denies Allen West’s request for fuller recount
By: CNN Political Unit
(CNN) – A Florida judge on Friday denied Rep. Allen West’s request for a recount of all early ballots in his race for re-election because his appeal did not meet the requirements for a temporary injunction, CNN affiliate WPBF reported.
West’s campaign had filed a complaint Tuesday in St. Lucie County, calling for the court to order a recount of all of the early ballots cast in Florida’s 18th Congressional District.
While the Democratic candidate, Patrick Murphy, declared victory last week in the close contest, West has yet to concede, citing the razor thin margin between the two.
On Friday, West’s campaign said that while they “respect the court’s decision, we remain concerned the voters in St. Lucie County will not be able to have confidence in the integrity of the electoral process and their right to a fair election, and will continue to pursue all legal options to ensure they do.”
“It became apparent today that Patrick Murphy has no interest in having a fair and accurate count of votes,” the campaign continued. “We are dismayed that a man who clearly has no respect for the law suddenly wants to lecture others about it. Regarding the “rule of law,” the fact that the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections did not follow it is part of the reason we have found so many discrepancies with the votes.”
West, a first term Republican congressman and retired Army lieutenant colonel, and Patrick were locked in one of the country’s most expensive races for a U.S. House seat, according to a ranking prepared by the Center for Responsive Politics. West raised $17 million through mid-October and Murphy brought in $3.7 million, according for Federal Election Commission records.
On Friday, the website of Florida’s secretary of state indicated Murphy had a roughly 1,900-vote lead over West out of 330,594 total ballots cast. The .58% margin falls outside of the .5% less margin needed for an automatic recount.
The votes are considered unofficial until November 20, when election officials have said the results will be certified. But West’s campaign argues the certification date should be postponed until all the early ballots are counted.
CNN’s Ashley Killough, Gregory Wallace, Kevin Bohn, and Robert Yoon contributed to this report.