- Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s lead over Gov. Jeff Colyer in the state’s Republican primary election for governor was cut from 200 to 91 votes on Thursday.
- It came after officials learned the listing for one county’s results in the state tally was incorrect.
- Unofficial results posted to the secretary of state’s website show Kobach winning Thomas County with 466 votes to Colyer’s 422, but it Colyer’s total was revised to 522 votes.
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s narrow 200-vote lead over Gov. Jeff Colyer in the state’s Republican primary election for governor was cut in half after a mistake was discovered in the election night’s tally.
The President Donald Trump-endorsed candidate’s lead over Colyer shrunk from 191 to just 91 votes on Thursday when officials learned the listing for one county’s results in the state tally was incorrect.
Unofficial results posted to the secretary of state’s website show Kobach winning Thomas County with 466 votes and Colyer receiving just 422 votes.
The Thomas County clerk office website, however, shows Colyer with 522 votes – 100 more than first reported.
The number was confirmed to The Associated Press by a counter clerk.
The discrepancy was discovered on Thursday after a routine request for a postelection check of county tallies by the secretary of state’s office, state elections director Bryan Caskey said.
County officials have not finished counting late-arriving mail-in ballots or provisional ballots provided to voters at polls, so the election’s final results remain unclear.
State law allows mail-in ballots to be counted it they arrive up to three days after the election.
“This is a routine part of the process,” Caskey said. “This is why we emphasise that election-night results are unofficial.”
After officials announced there would be a recount of votes because the election results were so close, Kobach told a campaign event that he would not recuse himself from the recount process, according to the Kansas City Star.
“The recount thing is done on a county level, so the secretary of state does not actually participate directly in the recount,” he said. “The secretary of state’s office merely serves as a coordinating entity overseeing it all but not actually counting the votes.”
There is no law requiring the secretary of state to recuse him or herself from the recount.
Kobach is a staunch ally of Trump and was endorsed by the president just days ahead of the primary.
“He is a fantastic guy who loves his State and our Country – he will be a GREAT Governor and has my full & total Endorsement! Strong on Crime, Border & Military,” Trump tweeted on the eve of the election.
Kobach previously advised the White House and served as a vice chairman on the now-disbanded voter fraud commission.
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