Tedisco Lead Now at 24 Votes in New York

Posted April 9, 2009 at 10:59am

With a recanvassing of votes now complete, Republican Jim Tedisco extended his razor-thin lead over Democrat Scott Murphy in New York’s still-unresolved 20th district special election.

But Murphy garnered more absentee votes after the first day of absentee ballot counting, according to numbers released by the New York Board of Elections Thursday morning.

As of 10 a.m., the official tally had Tedisco ahead by 24 votes — 77,201 to Murphy’s 77,177.

Tedisco was ahead by 68 votes after the recanvass process but Murphy picked up 44 more absentee ballots than the Republican during the first day that absentee ballots were counted. Wednesday’s counting included ballots from Columbia, Dutchess and Greene counties.

The winner of the hard-fought race will replace recently appointed Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) in the House.

Domestic absentee ballot counting will continue today in Essex, Warren and Washington counties, three areas that Democratic operatives believe are strong Murphy territory.

But the Tedisco camp expressed confidence on Wednesday evening that the former state Assembly Minority Leader would continue to hold on to his lead when the more than 6,700 absentee ballots are finally counted.

“We expect that the numbers will continue to move, just as they did last week,— said Tedisco attorney James Walsh. “We feel very good about our position and continue to believe that the final tally will show Jim Tedisco as the winner.—

The counting of ballots that came from military personnel and other voters who were overseas on Election Day will not begin until next week.