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Last county recount was close 1990 race

December 02, 2002|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

andrews@herald-mail.com

Before this year, the last time ballots were recounted in Washington County was in 1990.

That year, John P. Donoghue, a Democrat, narrowly defeated Bert L. Iseminger, a registered Republican at the time, for the position of District 2C state delegate.

Iseminger was ahead by 10 votes on Election Day, but Donoghue won by 34 votes after absentee ballots were counted.

Washington County Election Director Dorothy Kaetzel said last week the Donoghue-Iseminger race was the last time there was a recount.

All of the Election Day votes were counted on lever machines, Kaetzel said. Absentee ballots were counted using the same type of optical scanner that is used now.

Iseminger - who went on to become a Washington County Commissioner but was defeated last month - recalled that the scanner broke down partway through the count.

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The rest of the ballots were counted by hand.

A few days later, the absentee ballots were counted again to double-check the accuracy of the initial count, Iseminger said. He did not request the recount.

Although it capped a close race, Iseminger said, the 1990 recount didn't match the drama of this year's recount in the race between Republican LeRoy E. Myers Jr. and Maryland House Speaker Casper R. Taylor Jr., a Democrat.

Myers' lead increased from 71 votes to 76 votes after Tuesday's recount. Taylor could have asked for an immediate second recount, but conceded instead.

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