Trailing in Republican primary, Coghill asks for recount

A white man with a bald head and glasses in a black suit and red tie speaks into a microphone
Sen. John Coghill, the primary sponsor for SB 91, speaks during a Senate Majority press conference, Jan. 20, 2015. (Photo by Skip Gray/360 North)

After this story was published, the State Division of Elections sent out certified election results showing John Coghill trailed by just 14 votes.

North Pole state Senator John Coghill says he will ask the Division of Elections
for a recount of the Republican primary race for Senate District B. Coghill lost the race to Robert Myers by 16 votes, according to unofficial results from the Division of Elections.

According to Alaska law, if the difference between candidates is 20 votes or less, or was less than .5% of the total number of votes cast for the two candidates for the
contested office, the state will pay for a recount.

On Friday, the Division of Elections finished counting absentee and questioned ballots.

In Senate District B, only 16 votes separate Robert Myers, the apparent victor, from John
Coghill. Because that is within the margin of error described in the law, the state will recount the ballots, if one of the candidates asks. Coghill says he will.

“I’m gonna definitely call for a recount; when it’s this close, you just need to double-check everything.”

Reviewers will be working Monday on the last of the August 18 the primary election results.

Tiffany Montemayor of the Alaska Division of Elections says the ballots
will get one more review today before the election is Certified.

“They are going to go through our State Review Board. Our target deadline to have everything certified is August 30.”

As soon as that is done, Coghill’s request for a recount should be formally received.
“I’ve already sent in an email saying, ‘once the Certification comes out, if it remains the number that you gave me on Saturday, I would like this notice that I would like a recount.”

State law says the recount must be held within five days of the Elections Director receiving the request.

In House District 1, Christopher Quist won the Democrat primary over Bennie Colbert by a mere 8 votes according to the unofficial results. That, too, is within the statutory limit for a state-funded recount, if one of the candidates, or 10 interested voters, make the formal request. Colbert says he is being encouraged by supporters to request a recount, but as of Sunday night, he had not made up his mind.

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