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Will Florida face a recount? At what cost?

7:35 PM, Nov 7, 2012   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- About 11:30 p.m. election night, President Obama is declared the winner of the presidential election, even though Floridians were still voting.

Jacksonville Obama supporter Karen Akers said she had no doubts about the outcome

"Never felt he was going to lose?"

"No not at all," said Akers.

Jacksonville University political scientist Dr. Stephen Baker said the race was always close, in spite of the polls.

"It will be among the closest elections," said Baker, "I mean, 1976 was a very close election, so it is not that unusual."

Jerry Holland, Duval County Supervisor of Elections, like other county election officials, are still counting ballots.

"We're going through provisional ballots, the military ballots, and the absentee ballots that came into our office. In total, about 10,000 ballots," said Holland.

Holland said if the statewide final count falls within a half percent, then state law orders a recount in the presidential race.

"That has to be declared by the Secretary of State," said Holland.

The losing candidate can also demand a recount at taxpayers expense.

"The cost of a Duval County presidential recount is close to $150,000," said Holland, "When you consider the other 66 counties, probably over one million for the entire state to do a recount."

Dr. Baker said he doubts that would happen in Florida since President Obama has been declared winner nationwide.

"It would probably be very divisive for the nation to go through another antagonist recount," said Baker, "If it wouldn't make any difference in terms of the electoral college, the Romney campaign would be rather foolish to do that."

First Coast News

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