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For Immediate Release
March 7, 2002
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky

Recount Scheduled for Senate District 27 Special Election

AUGUSTA--A recount has been requested in the Senate District 27 Special Election held on March 5, 2002. The recount will be held under the supervision of the Department of Secretary of State's Elections Division on Monday, March 11, 2002 at 9:00 a.m. and will be conducted at the Maine Crime Lab, a secure State Police building on Hospital Street in Augusta. It is a public proceeding and members of the public and media may attend to observe, as space allows.

When a vote margin is less than 1%, state law requires the State Police to collect the ballots on the presumption that a recount will be requested. The recount is not automatic. The ballots are kept at a secured State Police facility until the recount is completed. The ballots are stored in tamperproof metal containers and are closed with specially numbered security seals and locks on election night.

In a recount, the representatives of each candidate and the staff of the Division of Elections manually review each ballot to determine the official vote tally. The recount is requested based upon the unofficial initial results, sometimes called the apparent results.

If the recount produces enough disputed ballots to affect the election result, the Maine Senate itself reviews the disputed ballots and resolves the election outcome. This procedure is set forth in the Maine Constitution, and states each house of the Legislature judges its own elections, determines the qualifications of its members and seats them. (Article IV, Part Third, Section 3).

The apparent results from Tuesday night's ballot count find Michael Brennan (D) of Portland with 3284, Sally G. Vamvakias (R) of Falmouth with 3264, Philip John Dawson (I) of Portland with 1083, Kelly Thompson Fernald (G) of Falmouth with 201 and Mark Cenci (I) of Portland with 119.

The Special Election was held to fill a vacancy that was created when Senator Joel Abromson passed away in January. The special election was held as required by the Maine Constitution (Article IV, Part Second, Section 5).