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Golden: I won’t concede until all votes are counted

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He’s Golden on!

Republican State Sen. Marty Golden refuses to concede his seat to Democratic upstart Andrew Gounardes, even after the challenger declared victory in Tuesday’s General Election by winning more than 1,100 votes than the incumbent.

Golden for sixteen years has represented the state’s 22nd Senate District — which includes Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, Marine Park, Gerritsen Beach, Gravesend, and parts of Sheepshead Bay, Borough Park, and Midwood — and won’t give up his office until thousands of outstanding absentee ballots are counted, he said.

“We’re just going to go through the paper, and I think even my opponent and everybody out there that’s listening understands that every vote counts,” Golden told Spectrum News New York 1 on Nov. 8. “I think everybody would want to know that their vote was counted.”

The most-recent data from the state Board of Election shows that Gounardes won the race with 31,168 votes to Golden’s 30,039, with all precincts reporting results.

But the Kings County Board of Elections still has to count absentee ballots requested by 3,400 voters in the district, according to a rep for the state board, who said added that the county board so far has received some 1,826 of those ballots — 1,053 of which came from registered Democrats, 477 from Republicans, 39 from Independents, 37 from Conservatives, three from Green Party members, two from Working Families Party members, and 213 from voters not registered with any party.

Voters’ party affiliations, however, do not necessarily indicate their vote, since they can select any candidate in the General Elections, state-board rep Cheryl Crouser said.

The county board is accepting absentee ballots through Nov. 13, and officials will begin counting them the next day, Crouser said. The county board has until Dec. 3 to finish its count of the overall votes, and the state board must certify the results by Dec. 14, she said.

Golden campaign spokesman Michael Tobman claimed that votes from seven ballot scanners still have to be counted, too, but a spokeswoman for the city Board of Elections could not confirm the number of scanned votes left to be counted.

The county board began an audit of a random selection of the borough’s scanners on Nov. 9 as part of the standard post-election certification process.

Gounardes, for his part, is confident in the victory he already declared, and believes the remaining ballots won’t affect his planned trip to Albany when the state Senate begins its next session in January, according to a rep.

“When every vote is counted, we are comfortable with our margins and look forward to serving the residents of District 22,” said Dara Adams.

Reach reporter Julianne McShane at (718) 260–2523 or by e-mail at jmcshane@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @juliannemcshane.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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