Action stalls release of final local results |

Action stalls release of final local results

Democrats who are dying to know where their county commissioner race support came from in western Garfield County should reach for the oxygen tank and start inhaling.

A lawsuit filed this week by 7th District congressional candidate Mike Feeley challenges the provisional vote count in the 7th District. It also prevents county clerks statewide from certifying and releasing precinct-by-precinct vote counts.

“This court decision will affect the whole state,” said Lisa Duran, spokeswoman for Colorado Secretary of State Donetta Davidson.

In his lawsuit, Feeley said the three counties that comprise the 7th District used different rules to decide which provisional ballots should be counted and which should be thrown out.

Provisional ballots are those cast by residents in one county who are registered in another, said Garfield County Clerk and Recorder Mildred Alsdorf. County clerks must verify residency after the election, and ballots won’t be counted if residency can’t be confirmed.

Alsdorf said approximately 214 provisional ballots were cast in Garfield County, and 187 were counted.

Depending on the Feeley lawsuit’s outcome, provisional ballot totals could change throughout the state, said Duran.

Alsdorf said she hopes to receive direction on releasing vote totals from the Secretary of State’s office by the end of the week.

Democratic challenger Tresi Houpt defeated Republican incumbent Walt Stowe by 757 votes out of 13,467 cast in the Nov. 5 election. For the past four county commissioner elections, Democrats fared poorly in the west end of the county.

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