All ballots cast in Jasper County in this year’s General Election were recounted this weekend and a hand recount will be done today in a precinct in Mingo.
The preliminary results, added to vote tallies from the 23 other counties in Iowa’s second congressional district, show Democratic candidate Rita Hart now leading Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks by 163 votes.
The secretary of state ordered the recount after Jasper County Auditor Dennis Parrott notified state officials that a clerical error in his office had given Miller-Meeks and other candidates on the ballot too many votes out of the Mingo precinct. Parrott said Saturday’s recount came up with the tally he expected, “which was the corrected results we send to the Secretary of State on Thursday, so I’m very happy, very elated. The process is a perfect process. It catches things.”
The Miller-Meeks campaign has questioned the auditor’s operation and asked Parrott to provide more information about the error. Parrott told reporters he stands by the results of the recount, which was done in the presence of election observers.
“It was watched by many eyes,” Parrott said. “It was very transparent. You saw everything that took place.”
All results are still unofficial until Tuesday, when the Jasper County Board of Supervisors convenes to conduct what’s called the official canvass.
There’s no declared winner in Iowa’s second congressional district race yet. It’s possible one or both campaigns may seen recounts in selected precincts or in certain counties.
(By Iowa Public Radio’s Kate Payne)