Special to the Vanguard
On December 8, election officials certified Melissa Hurtado’s victory over David Shepard by 20 votes in Senate District 16. As of today, nearly a month later, the recount of the hand-picked precincts originally requested by the Shepard campaign has been completed in all four counties, with Shepard picking up just 6 net votes from the original certified results.
Shepard’s recount request focused on precincts where Shepard performed best, including:
- 100% of ballots cast countywide in the three counties won by Shepard, Fresno, Kings, and Tulare Counties.
- 93% of ballots cast in precincts won by Shepard in SD 16’s largest county,
Meanwhile, in Kern no ballots have been reviewed in precincts won by Hurtado. These unreviewed precincts represent 79% of the county and were won by Hurtado 62%-38%.
Lisa Gasperoni, Hurtado’s campaign consultant, noted, “While both our campaigns have requested the review of additional election materials, it is clear the recount process will not change the certified winner, Melissa Hurtado.”
Gasperoni added, “Mr. Shepard can continue to drag out the process with no plausible pathway to claiming the lead or sue local election officials in counties he previously praised because they failed to produce the outcome he wanted. Mr. Shepard’s other option is to respect the voters in reflecting that close elections, while never easy, eventually must come to an end.”