Harrisburg, PA — The race was too close for the two open seats for the PA Commonwealth Court.
There will be a recount between the second- and third-place finishers, Democrat Lori Dumas and Republican Drew Crompton.
Dumas is very slightly ahead. If the votes are recounted with her still in the lead, we will have one Republican and one Democrat elected to the two open judge seats. If Crompton comes out on top instead, it will be two Republicans in the seats.
Harrisburg, PA — Acting Secretary of State Veronica Degraffenreid issued notice that she will order a statutorily required statewide recount in the Nov. 2 race for two open seats on the Commonwealth Court.
Stacy Marie Wallace (R) finished with 26.61 percent of the total votes, securing one of the open seats.
Lori A. Dumas (D) and Drew Crompton (R), the second- and third-place finishers respectively, have vote totals within the one-half of one percent margin that triggers a mandatory recount under state law.
As of today, the unofficial returns for the Commonwealth Court race submitted by all 67 counties show the following results:
- Stacy Marie Wallace (R) – 1,352,365 (26.61 percent)
- Lori A. Dumas (D) – 1,288,936 (25.36 percent)
- Drew Crompton (R) – 1,272,132 (25.03 percent)
- David Lee Spurgeon (D) 1,168,314 (22.99 percent)
The department estimates that the recount will cost at least $1.3 million of taxpayer funds.
Since the automatic recount provision was enacted under Act 97 of 2004, the provision has been triggered five times, with two recounts carried out.
The first recount was conducted in the Superior Court race in November 2009, where nine candidates were competing for four vacancies. In that election, there was a difference of 3,330 votes between the fourth- and sixth-place candidates, and a margin of 2,006 votes between the fourth- and fifth-place finishers. The recount affirmed the initial results.
The second recount was ordered in May 2011 in the Democratic primary contest for a seat on the Commonwealth Court, when the margin between the two candidates was 2,116 votes. The recount affirmed the initial results.
A recount in the 2010 Democratic primary race for lieutenant governor was averted when the trailing candidate waived his right to a recount. In 2017, three candidates for Superior Court, all of whose vote totals fell within the recount margin, waived their right to a recount. And in 2019, the third-place finisher in the race for two open seats on the Superior Court waived her right to a recount.
Crompton had until noon today to waive his right to a recount. The law provides that, before the recount is ordered, the secretary must give 24 hours’ notice by press release or other means to the candidates and to county party chairs of each party or political body affected by the recount.
Unofficial returns for the Nov. 2 election can be found at electionreturns.pa.gov.