Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant is narrowly rebuffing an effort to recall her in a contest too close to call a week after the election.
Nearly 53% of District 3’s 77,500 registered voters cast ballots in the stand-alone election, the first recall attempt of a Seattle city council member to make it to a ballot.
Here’s what you need to know in the final days of vote counting:
- Sawant was down in initial ballot counts on Dec. 7, but has made gains in every results update since, overtaking the recall effort on Thursday and maintaining the lead since. She currently leads with 50.4% of the more than 40,000 counted ballots cast in the recall.
- Though Sawant led by 309 votes on Monday, there are more than 400 outstanding challenged ballots which, if resolved — or cured in elections language — by 4:30 p.m. Thursday, could be counted and potentially change the outcome.
- More than 200 signature-challenged ballots have been reconciled and added to the count since Thursday.
- Results are being posted daily until Thursday. Election results will be certified by King County Elections on Friday.
- Sawant claimed an “apparent victory” late last week while recall leader Henry Bridger II admitted “the ultimate outcome will likely fall short of removing Sawant from office.” Neither side has made a more official call of the race.
- There are no automatic recounts in ballot measures, including recalls, so for a recount to take place, a campaign would have to request one by Dec. 21. The campaign also would be responsible for paying for the recount.
- Voters who participated in the recall election can track the status of their ballots on King County’s website. Voters can fix signature challenges by filling out and returning a signature challenge form to King County Elections. How they must fill out and sign the form can vary depending on the specific reason a signature was challenged. Voters can contact King County Elections for more information on signature challenges at 206-205-5686.
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