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For Immediate Release
June 14, 2002

Contact: Dan Gwadosky
207-626-8400

Recount Scheduled for 2nd Congressional District Republican Primary

AUGUSTA--The recount for the Republican Primary in the Second Congressional District has been scheduled to begin on June 25, 2002 at 9:00 a.m. and will be conducted under the supervision of the Secretary of State's Office at the State Police Barracks in Augusta. The June 25th start date was selected after consultation with the candidates and by their mutual agreement.

No other recount requests have been received as of this date. The deadline for requesting a recount for any of the primary races is Tuesday, June 18, 2002 at 5 p.m., and all requests must be submitted in writing to the Secretary of State.

All recounts are conducted in a secure State Police building on Hospital Street in Augusta. Recounts are a public proceeding and members of the public and media may attend to observe, as space allows. State law requires the State Police to immediately collect the ballots for the recounts and keep them in the secured State Police facility until a recount has been completed. The ballots are stored in tamperproof metal containers and are closed with specially numbered security seals and locks.

"The methodical manner in which recounts are conducted in Maine allows candidates, as well as the general public, to have confidence in the electoral process and in the results of our elections," stated Secretary of State Dan A. Gwadosky. "Recounts are an important check and balance of our democracy."

A person requesting a recount may be required by law to make a deposit, depending on the margin of victory in the election. For example, if the margin between the top two candidates in an election is less than 2 % of the total votes cast, then no deposit is required. If the margin is 2 % to 4%, then a $500 deposit is required. If the margin is greater than 4 %, then a $1,000 deposit is required.

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. Recounts are requested based upon the unofficial initial results, sometimes called the apparent results.

In a primary election, if the recount produces enough disputed ballots to affect the election result, the Supreme Judicial Court shall review the ballots and determine the outcome of the election. This procedure is set forth in Maine law.

A recount in a congressional race, while not a common occurrence, has happened in recent history. In 1974, after the general election in November, a recount was requested and conducted for the First Congressional District. The apparent winner on election night was David Emery (R). Peter Kyros (D) requested the recount. Upon completion of the recount, Emery retained his lead and went on to represent the people of Maine's First Congressional District.