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Florida Recount Lapse May Seal Republican’s Loss in House Race

Florida’s St. Lucie County missed a deadline for recounting of ballots cast in U.S. Representative Allen West’s re-election race, potentially sealing Democrat Patrick Murphy’s victory over the first-term Republican.

The county failed to process its recount by noon today as required, which would leave in place an earlier tally that left West about 1,900 votes behind Murphy, according to Tim Edson, West’s campaign manager. A call to the St. Lucie’s election office wasn’t answered today.

West, a favorite of the anti-tax Tea Party movement, was elected in 2010 to represent the district, which also includes part of Palm Beach County. His campaign is evaluating options for challenging the results to ensure votes were counted correctly, Edson said in a telephone interview.

“We’re going to pursue whatever means we can to correct this,” he said. “All we are asking for is a full and accurate count of all the ballots.”

St. Lucie County’s failure to meet the deadline was reported earlier today by the Associated Press.

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