August 16, 2012

Candidate Says No to Recount As County Election Results Finalized

Despite being defeated by the narrowest margin possible, a candidate for Scotland County Commissioner has decided not to pursue his legal right to a recount.

George Frederick, who was edged out by a single vote in the Republican primary on August 7th in the race for the Western District Commissioner, confirmed on Monday, August 13th, that he would not ask for a recount.

"I discussed my options with the County Clerk and she demonstrated to me how the automated voting machines work, leaving me confident in their accuracy," Frederick said. "With such a small number of ballots cast, I don't see that much room for mistake, so it doesn't seem like it would be worth the added expense to the county to seek a recount."

Under Missouri Revised Statutes Chapter 115.601 115.601 "any contestant in a primary or other election contest who was defeated by less than one percent of the votes cast for the office... shall have the right to a recount of the votes cast for the office or on the question."

David Wiggins secured the spot on the Republican ballot in the commissioner race to face incumbent Paul Campbell, a Democrat. Wiggins received 135 votes to 134 for Frederick.

Wiggins edged Frederick 112-106 in the West Jefferson township and also had a 6-0 edge in Tobin and a 6-2 advantage in absentee ballots. Frederick narrowed the gap with a 26-11 edge in Mt. Pleasant township.

Beyond the local races, the 22% of Scotland County voters that turned out for the Primary basically had the pulse of the state, missing on just a pair of races.

While Scotland County voters backed Sarah Steelman for the Republican nominee for U.S. Senator, strong support from the St. Louis area and southeast Missouri helped earn the party's nod for U.S. representative Todd Akin. Akin received 36% of the vote compared to 30% for John Brunner and 29% for Steelman.

The only other miss by Scotland County voters, also occurred on the Republican ballot, where locals backed Scott Rupp with 151 votes for the party's nominee for Secretary of State nomination. Shane Schoeller received 124 votes locally, but won the three-candidate race with 35.6% of the vote statewide. Rupp received 34.5% of the vote with Bill Stouffer, who received 97 votes in Scotland County, earning 30.2% of the vote statewide.

Amendment #2 passed in every single county in the state, receiving nearly 83% support for amending the Missouri Constitution to provide that neither the state nor political subdivisions shall establish any official religion. It also insures the rights of a citizen to express their religious beliefs regardless of their religion and that the right to worship includes prayer in private or public settings, on government premises, on public property, and in all public schools.

The amendment also requires public schools to display the Bill of Rights of the United States Constitution.

Statewide voter turnout was 23.2%. Harrison County, in northwest Missouri, was tops in the state with 43.9% voter turnout followed by Reynolds County (43.3%) and Dade County (42.3%).

Locally, Knox County was tops with 41.7% voter turnout, followed by Schuyler County with 37.4%. Clark County had a similar attendance to Scotland County, at 21%.

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