Just as the Republican establishment works to sell out other known reformers, the state of Florida’s party machine (led by Romney’s Florida spokesman) made sure to redistrict Allen West’s territory to get him out of there. West, like other reformers, are apparently not needed.
The only problem is the election Tuesday night was very close. West’s Democratic challenger so far has won with 50.4 percent of the vote, by about 2,400 votes. According to this article, that surpasses the amount of votes which automatically trigger a recount. But considering there are votes out there which are coming from overseas and military personnel, West’s chances of slimming that lead down are good.
The way I see it, if his opponent is confident in his win, he’d at least have the respect to await the votes to come in from our military.
But there seems to be other issues. According to the article, possible voting irregularities are a cause for concern: (emphasis)
West’s campaign insists there are many unanswered questions in the race, mostly centered in St. Lucie County, the only one of three counties in the district that Murphy won. They are concerned that votes were counted twice and have asked to review sign-in books from the polls to ensure the number of voters matched the ballot count.
"We’re simply not going to just walk away from the race until we see that the numbers add up," West campaign manager Tim Edson said.
West’s only path forward appears to be through the courts. Under state law, he still could contest the election if misconduct or fraud might have changed its result.
Of course West should have a recount. Of course we should wait to see what the results are once the military and overseas votes come in, even if they are just a "handful" as the AP tells us. Also, he won two of the three counties in the district.
Further, considering all the GOP establishment has done to wipe West out, then I find West’s campaign’s suspicion of possible voter shenanigans to be perfectly reasonable.
Yet, the news stories have already written him off as the loser and the headlines portray him as a stubborn man who refuses to step back. If West were a screaming liberal, he’d be getting a lot more support from the media and by now his opponent and supporters calling for West to bow out would be portrayed as racists.
This really is the saddest form of journalism I’ve ever witnessed. An obviously biased Caroline Bankoff over at New York Magazine chimes in: (emphasis)
Brave anti-communist crusader and crazy Florida congressman Allen West has been declared the loser in his tight race against challenger Patrick Murphy. This is not a surprise to most, as Murphy took credit for the win on Wednesday morning, when — with 100 percent of precincts reporting — he led West by 2,456 votes, or .74 of the electorate. In Florida, recounts are trigged when the winning margin is .5 percent or less, but West started demanding one anyway, citing "unanswered questions" in St. Lucie county.
This morning, the state issued "complete but unofficial results showing Murphy with a lead of 2,442 votes, or 50.4 percent." Though "a handful" of overseas and military ballots haven’t been counted, Florida law says any a decision to do a recount would be based on today’s numbers.
Earth to Caroline. Yes Florida law would be based on today’s numbers. However, as you admit, there are still overseas and military votes to be counted. Despite the fact that 100% of the precincts have been reported, there are still votes to be counted.
I find it ironic that folks this feckless in the media would be so smug in the face of our military who fight and die for "Freedom of the Press" just so people like Bankoff can abuse it. Allen West once did that for her as well. But having respect for people who make this country work and for those who make our liberties possible obviously falls short when there’s a narrative waiting to be fulfilled.
According to Fox News, Florida officials have ordered a partial recount:
Election officials in St. Lucie County will recount early votes cast in the hotly contested race for Florida’s 18th district’s House seat between Tea Party favorite Rep. Allen West and his challenger, Democrat Patrick Murphy.
The St. Lucie County Canvassing Board announced late Saturday it had set an “emergency meeting” to start at 7 a.m. Sunday at its headquarters, to “recount all ballots cast during early voting.” The number of early ballots is estimated by officials to be roughly 37,000.
West, who has refused to concede the race, is currently trailing Murphy by 2,442 votes, according to the latest results from Florida Division of Elections. On its website, the agency says West has garnered 164,448 votes to Murphy’s 166,890.
Stuff is really starting to stink: