BRADENTON – A recount of votes in the Manatee County Commission District 2 Democratic primary is scheduled for 10 a.m. at the Manatee County Supervisor of Elections Office. After the initial count Tuesday night, Palmetto City Commissioner Charles Smith led incumbent Michael Gallen by a razor-thin, five-vote margin.
Because a write-in candidate had filed for the race, it was closed to only Democrats in the district, despite the fact that the race would in any feasible scenario decide the winner of the seat. In a race that saw poor turnout which more of less mirrored that of the rest of the county, Gallen had 1,024 votes to Smith's 1,029, with Corie Holmes pulling down a respectable 884.
The recount will be conducted by the county's canvasing board which is comprised of SOE Michael Bennett, Manatee County Commission Chair Larry Bustle and Manatee County Court Judge Mark Singer.
Provisional ballots, which can be cast by would-be voters who think they are registered and eligible but either do not show up on the rolls or fail to bring proper ID, will not be reviewed by the board until afterward. Therefore, an announcement on the official winner is not scheduled until later in the day.
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