Recount confirms St. Thomas-St. John result
Published: October 6, 2012
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ST. THOMAS - The primary election results for the St. Thomas-St. John District Senate race did not change following Friday's recount of almost 600 paper ballots cast Sept. 8.
The recount took about two hours Friday morning - a fraction of the time anticipated by St. Thomas-St. John Board of Election members - and will be paid for by the Elections System. Elections judges recounted only the votes for the sixth-, seventh- and eighth-place finishers, who were Donald Cole, Justin Harrigan Sr. and Jean Forde, respectively.
"Once we got through the first 100, it went like this," board chairwoman Alecia Wells said, clapping her hands.
The recount came at the request of Forde. He was - and will remain - five votes behind seventh-place finisher Harrigan. Only the top seven finishers in the primary appear on the General Election ballot for Senate from each district.
"I think the effort was all good," Forde said. "A loss is a loss."
Once an elections board votes to approve a recount, the V.I. Code does not spell out any ways to appeal the recount's results. The St. Thomas-St. John Board of Elections voted to approve the recount on Monday.
Even if there are other paths for appeal, Forde said he would not necessarily pursue them and described himself as "completely satisfied."
"There's no need to hold up the other candidate," he said. "Like I said, it's nothing personal. I have no animosity toward him. I think with a small difference like this, it's like in trade - measure twice and cut once. I just wanted to make sure of the accuracy. We must now move on."
Harrigan said that is exactly what he intends to do.
"We gotta get in high gear," he said. "We lost about 20, 22 days, and now we have to get out our message to the public."
Harrigan said there were never any hard feelings between him and Forde.
"Definitely, we had our handshake," Harrigan said.
Both candidates said the Elections System could improve.
Harrigan said some of the paper ballots were not stapled, leading to certain pages being out of order. He also said some way should be found to mark ballots once they are counted so they are not counted twice.
Forde listed other concerns about the territory's voting process, including the fact that some people voting by absentee ballot can vote after Election Day. He also added criticism of the conduct of Board of Elections members Lawrence Boschulte and Harry Daniel. Boschulte and Daniel have walked out of meetings in recent weeks to protest the presence of board member Wilma Marsh Monsanto, who pledged to recuse herself from board involvement while campaigning for the Senate At-large seat but later changed her mind.
"I'm talking about the behavior of certain board members - the sarcasm, the disruption," Forde said, singling out Boschulte and Daniel. "Their behavior is totally unacceptable and very unprofessional."
Forde said he plans to support all the Democratic primary winners, though he has not yet decided whether he will get behind any individual candidates.
"I certainly intend to support my Democratic team, but I don't know if anyone will want an endorsement from me," Forde said.
The board is hosting a number of voter registration drives this weekend, as Sunday is the last day to register to vote for the General Election on Nov. 6.
- Contact reporter Lou Mattei at 714-9124 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.Members of the St. Thomas-St. John Board of Elections will participate in the following voter registration drives this weekend:
- Today from noon to 2 p.m. in the University of the Virgin Islands cafeteria.
- Today from 3 to 5 p.m. at Heavenly Preschool, No. 6 Fifth Street, Sugar Estate St. Thomas.
- Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. at the V.I. Elections System Office, 22 Crystal Gade, St. Thomas.
- Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Crown Bay Gaming and Sport Lounge on St. Thomas.
Those who want to register must know their Social Security number and must provide an original birth certificate, U.S. passport, naturalization certificate, baptismal certificate or DD-214 as proof of citizenship.
The last day to register to vote is Sunday.
For more information, call 774-3107. Delegate to Congress
ï¼ Donna Christensen (I) 3,957
Stacey Plaskett 3,187
ï¼ Holland Redfield II 143
Vincent Danet 59
ï¼ Craig Barshinger (I) 2,356
Andrew Rutnick 1,636
Ronnie Jones 1,665
Iris Kern 321
St. Thomas-St. John
ï¼ Clifford Graham 2,734
ï¼ Shawn-Michael Malone (I) 2,182
ï¼ Myron Jackson 2,155
ï¼ Clarence Payne 1,979
ï¼ Janette Millin Young (I) 1,967
ï¼ Donald Cole 1,507
ï¼ Justin Harrigan Sr. 1,480
Jean Forde 1,475
P. Simeon Sprauve (I) 1,396
Franke Hoheb 1,343
Stedmann Hodge Jr. 1,198
Riise Smith-Richards 948
Matthew Hodge 601
Claudette Georges 547
Luis Morales 464
Christina Lee 353
Gregory Miller 271
Moses Carty 271
Sean Magras 178
Gilmore Estrill 130
Board of Election
ï¼ Arturo Watlington Jr. 1,508
Yvonne Solomon Freeman 731
Edwardo Carmona Sr. 357
Russell Williams 141
Board of Education
ï¼ Judy Gomez (I) 1,861
ï¼ D. Smith-Watlington (I) 1,606
ï¼ Keith Richards (I) 1,455
ï¼ Arah Lockhart (I) 1,312
LaVerne Slack 1,122
I - incumbent