The city Board of Elections is scheduled to start counting about 2,000 absentee and affidavit ballots in the contested Democratic primary for the 13th Congressional District.Rangel's lead has been shrinking as more ballots come in. And there are apparently other strange things happening:
The race appeared decided last week on election night, with Rep. Charles Rangel seemingly holding a sizeable lead in his campaign to hold onto his seat. But the vote margin shrunk, leading some to wonder if state Sen. Adriano Espaillat conceded too soon.
A tally released by the Board of Elections last weekend showed Rangel had a lead of 802 votes.
Board spokeswoman Valerie Vazquez says the count of the outstanding ballots is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. It could lead to a full manual recount if the final vote difference is less than one-half of 1 percent of all votes cast.
It’s a bizarre situation that just keeps getting weirder, a strange case of missing precincts, questionable ballots and utter confusion over who’s to blame for the mess and when the race might be settled.There's no doubt that, overall, Rangel has been good for his district, historically one of the overlooked urban areas here in the Northeast. But a crook, is a crook, is a crook, so I won't be sorry to see him get bounced. Dismantling Rangel's machine, on the other hand....
What’s known is this: As of Friday evening, 32 precincts – six percent of all votes cast – had yet to be accounted for. And another 2,447 affidavit ballots and 667 absentee votes hadn’t been counted yet either. According to the city Board of Elections, Rangel’s lead over second-place finisher state Sen. Adriano Espaillat stood at 1,032 votes, with enough outstanding ballots to alter the outcome.