Alberico retains Garfield County Clerk’s Office over McLean | PostIndependent.com

Alberico retains Garfield County Clerk’s Office over McLean

Garfield County Clerk and Recorder candidate Bonnie McLean interacts with supporters at the Republican watch party on Tuesday evening at the Hotel Colorado.

UPDATE: With the last Garfield County ballots counted as of 5 p.m. Wednesday, incumbent Garfield County Clerk and Recorder Jean Alberico held a 55 percent to 45 percent edge over challenger Bonnie McLean. The final, unofficial tally had Alberico, a Democrat, with 12,871 votes to Republican McLean’s 10,700.

Incumbent Democrat Jean Alberico held a sizable lead over Republican challenger Bonnie McLean in the race for Garfield County’s Clerk and Recorder seat late Tuesday.

As of 11:45 p.m., with approximately three-quarters of the ballots counted, Alberico held an 8 percent polling advantage over McLean, at 54 percent to 46 percent.

With 19,717 votes having been counted in the race, McLean had earned 9,081 votes to Alberico's 10,636. Another 3,520 ballots were still to be tallied on Wednesday.

A string of embezzlement cases in the Garfield County Clerk and Recorder's Office between 2012 and 2015 took a front seat on the campaign trail.

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McLean ran on the promise that she would restore integrity to the office, while Alberico said numerous changes had already been made in the wake of an investigation from outside experts and a forensic examiner on the office’s policies and procedures.

Alberico ran unopposed for reelection in 2014, but faced a close race this election cycle with McLean.

According to Alberico, 6,512 ballots were returned on Election Day alone, and were still being processed late Tuesday and into Wednesday.

mabennett@postindependent.com