A week after the election, three key coastal North County races remain undecided, as the San Diego County Registrar of Voters grapples with hundreds of thousands of uncounted ballots as well as a high voter turnout that in the coastal region could be as high as 90 percent.
As of the latest update released by the registrar at 5:02 p.m. on Nov. 15, 396,000 ballots remain uncounted — down from 620,000 the day after the election.
In Carlsbad, the latest update in the City Council race shows challenger Cori Schumacher maintaining a lead of 70 votes over incumbent Lorraine Wood. Schumacher has 13,830 votes, or 20.13 percent, to Wood’s 13,760, or 20.03 percent.
Schumacher was 73 votes ahead on election night, a lead that fell to just 13 votes on Thursday, Nov. 10, when the first update was released. On Friday she was up 27 votes; on Saturday, 51 votes; on Sunday, 45 votes; and on Monday, 69 votes.
The race for the Third District seat on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, meanwhile, is tightening, although most sources on election night declared incumbent Dave Roberts the winner over challenger Kristin Gaspar, the mayor of Encinitas.
According to the latest update, the gap between the two has shrunk to 1,735, from 2,293 on election night.
The latest tally for Roberts is 83,165 votes, or 50.53 percent, to 81,430, or 49.47 percent, for Gaspar.
Incumbent Darrell Issa also is locked in a tight race against challenger Doug Applegate in the 49th Congressional District, which straddles San Diego and Orange Counties.
San Diego County accounts for about two-thirds of voters in the district.
Registrars in both counties issued updates Nov. 15.
Issa now has a total of 117,848 votes, to 113,272 votes for Applegate, a difference of just 4,576 votes. Since election night, the difference between the two has hovered around 4,000 votes.
In San Diego County, according to the latest update, Applegate leads Issa, 52.95 percent (87,355 votes) to 47.05 percent (77,619 votes). But in Orange County, Issa is ahead 60.8 percent to 39.2 percent for Applegate, with the latest tally showing the incumbent with 40,229 votes to Applegate’s 25,917.
Issa’s overall advantage is higher than the 1 percent that triggers a recount – he’s currently ahead 51 percent to 49 percent – but that hasn’t stopped the incumbent from issuing two angry emails to supporters, asking for money to help pay for a recount should he wind up on the losing end and get stuck with the bill.
“As we’ve seen on the news since last Tuesday’s historic Republican victory, the Left is lashing out in any way possible to protest our success at resonating with the American people,” Issa writes in an email sent Nov. 15. “I have just become their number one target. See, I won my re-election campaign fairly and outright, but now the Democrats are calling for recount in hopes to cancel out my constituent’s (sic) voices and replace their chosen Representative with a Leftist Democrat. They know that if the vote totals get close enough, the Registrar will be forced to begin counting ballots cast by illegal, unregistered voters. This recount is about so much more than just ME. It’s the national Democrat machines first attempt to embarrass President Trump and to stomp out the change that American’s across this nation have called for! We can’t let them get away with this. I WILL NOT allow this election to be STOLEN from the American people by the Left who are trying to cancel out my constituent’s voices and votes! My team is going to monitor EVERY SINGLE BALLOT to ensure that the voices of the people is (sic) heard. But, this is going to cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars. That’s a problem, because I left NOTHING on the table during the campaign, and our resources are entirely depleted. Will you stand with me today and make an URGENT donation to the Recount Fund right now? Please click on the buttons below to make a contribution of ANY AMOUNT you can afford….”
A third email to supporters was sent today (Nov. 16): “I won, but now the liberals are trying to steal the election. 189,335 ballots have been counted, and I am winning by 2.2%, but there are still as many as 103,787 ballots left to count, including many provisional ballots. The truth is, there are enough ballots left to be counted that I could still lose. I am optimistic thats not going to happen though.
“Heres the problem, most of the remaining votes are late absentee and so called provisional ballots. Those late votes arent trending in my favor, because Nancy Pelosi and the DCCC spent more than 7 million dollars against me, telling blatant lies about me. Because of those lies, (which I just filed a lawsuit against them for blatant slander and libel) many later voters were influenced and they could bring the count to within 1%. Once the count is that close, Democrats will attempt to force the Registrars to allow thousands of illegal, unregistered voters to influence the election.
“I’ve hired a team of 20 election observers and two law firms to challenge every last one of these illegal voters. We cannot allow our election to be corrupted by outside influences and illegal votes. I will not allow my constituents voices to be cancelled by those who do not have the right to vote in our elections.
“I am writing, and I am so sorry to ask because you’ve done so much already, but I need your help again. I need you to make an urgent contribution to my re-count fund so that this election isnt stolen from us. I wouldnt ask if I didnt need your help today, but I do. I urgently need your contribution of $35, $55, $85, $125 or even $525 today. Whatever youre able to do to help, thank you from the bottom of my heart and may God bless you.”