RALEIGH (AP) — The trailing Democratic Party candidate for lieutenant governor said Monday she won’t seek a statewide recount, saying that a new tally was unlikely to make up the nearly 6,900 votes she needs. And it would cost North Carolina’s 100 counties at least $1.5 million to recount.
“We face the reality that an extended battle would not alter the outcome of this race,” Linda Coleman said at a news conference after conceding the outcome to Republican Dan Forest. “It was a hard-fought, spirited campaign and we have stark differences. But in the end, in a tight race, North Carolinians have chosen Mr. Forest as their next lieutenant governor.”
Coleman had until today at noon to demand a recount because her margin with Forest was less than 10,000 votes out of almost 4.4 million cast.
Forest is a first-time candidate, Raleigh architect and the son of retiring U.S. Rep. Sue Myrick of Charlotte, who leaned on his party’s tea party and evangelical blocs. Coleman was a state worker for more than 30 years. Most recently she was Gov. Beverly Perdue’s state personnel director before stepping down to run for the state’s No. 2 office.
Forest had declared himself the winner, but the vote count was neither final nor official.
Gary Bartlett, state elections board executive director, said a statewide recount would have cost between $1.5 million and $2.5 million, with counties picking up the tab, Bartlett said.
Less-extensive recounts are still possible.
State Sen. David Rouzer, who trails incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre by 655 votes in the 7th Congressional District race, did not respond to messages about whether he will seek a recount. The State Board of Election hadn’t heard from Rouzer either, deputy director Johnnie McLean said.
State Sen. Stan White, D-Dare, also could seek a recount after seeing his election-night lead evaporate. He now trails Republican Bill Cook, an outgoing first-term House member from Beaufort County, by 32 votes. White was appointed in early 2011 to fill the seat of the retiring Marc Basnight, D-Dare, who was Senate leader for a record 18 years.