Staten Island Advance


Too-close-to-call Staten Island election has all eyes on next week's recount


Thursday February 26, 2009, 8:13 AM


Staten Island AdvanceNorth Shore City Council candidates Ken Mitchell and Debi Rose smile at their respective election night parties. A winner won't be declared for at least another week.


The legal battles in the North Shore City Council race aren't over.


After weeks of wrangling in the courts, candidate John Tabacco was reinstated onto the ballot for the Staten Island election on Monday.


Now, the race's top two finishers could keep the controversy going a while longer after being separated by a razor-thin margin at the polls.


"It's going to go on for weeks," one source told the Advance.


The Board of Elections (BOE) next Wednesday will begin its standard recount of the votes cast in Tuesday's special election, and also will begin counting crucial absentee and affidavit ballots that were not part of the election-night tally.


With the margin so tight, the absentee and affidavit ballots could decide the outcome. Ballots that were "improperly" marked by voters during the election will also be reexamined and can be the source of legal challenges.


A preliminary BOE tally on Tuesday had Mitchell leading Ms. Rose by 34 votes in the election, which was conducted entirely with paper ballots. The Associated Press that night had Mitchell up by 241 votes, but BOE sources said yesterday that Mitchell's margin appeared to be just 91 votes.


They attributed the fluctuating totals to errors made while votes were being tabulated by election workers.


Read Tom Wrobleski's story in today's Advance.


COMMENTS (6)Post a comment

Posted by rhino718 on 02/26/09 at 8:28AM


If McMahn didnt convince that clown Tony Baker to run, Debi

Rose would have won easily. All a set up to see his boy Mitch win.

But I guess thats politics pal.


Posted by happylady04 on 02/26/09 at 9:08AM


Enough with the Tony Baker spoiler remarks. He was running for council before Rose. Starting to sound like a bunch of whiners. Mitchell lost votes from other candidates running too. You don't think he lost votes because of Tabacco, Pagano and Saryian?


Posted by integrityNYC on 02/26/09 at 9:09AM


The fact that SIers knew that there would be a vacancy in the City Council back in November should have resulted in an earlier election so that we would have representation in the City Council in January.....Now- what's the holdup about knowing how many affidavits were done on Tuesday?...Even though snail mail might take up until next week for a final count, why can't the rest of the votes be re-counted and decisions made about any "improper" markings on ballots (e.g. where some people marked all 6 names, some of the six names or put an "X" or circled the name(s)?...That would certainly expedite the decision - which most likely will end up in more litigation....Lastly, why isn't there a way to expedite the court process with regard to elections so that last minute decisions (about who is/is not going to be on the ballot, etc.) are not going to result in the fiasco that ensued on Tuesday (ask around: people in many venues did not get instructions, including some BOE pollworkers). WE NEED REPRESENTATION IN THE CITY COUNCIL....N.B. The press coverage about this outerborough not only included incorrect information - but most of it was relegated to the back pages of other city newspapers...Why is the AP considered the source?.....FACT-CHECKING should have been done with the NYPD and the BOE who actually collected the data.


Posted by BigMoe1 on 02/26/09 at 3:47PM


Come on Debi, cry racism. It's been working on a national level. No reason not to try it here.


Posted by violethill on 02/26/09 at 4:10PM


Everyone knew that Debi was running for this seat in 09 immediately after she conceded 8 years ago. There was no doubt.


Posted by dt4debi on 02/26/09 at 6:07PM


Anyone who is well informed knew that Debi was going to run for the Council seat. It makes no difference who ran first, but it does make a difference who knows and has done what, for the north shore. Staten Island needs a new leader from another club other than the "old boy's club. The history of Staten Island Politics is that it is not necessarily inclusive, any thinking person knows this to be true. The idea of Tony Baker running only served to split the vote, just what the "old boys club" wanted.