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LOS ANGELES -- More than a month after the June 5 vote on Proposition 29, and several weeks after conceding defeat, the backers of the proposed California tobacco tax have requested a recount in parts of Los Angeles County.
The election results on California Secretary of State Debra Brown's official website show Proposition 29 losing 503 percent to 49.7 percent. With more than five million votes cast, the tally stands at 2,553,137 million "no" votes to 2,523,572 "yes" votes. As CSNews Online reported late last month, supporters of the ballot measure admitted defeat on June 22 because there were not enough uncounted ballots to overcome the gap.
However, the Sacremento Bee is now reporting that a recount was requested in some Los Angeles County precincts on Monday, July 9, the deadline for submitting such a request, Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk Dean Logan confirmed Thursday. Logan said 191 precincts were selected for a recount by supporters.
The report added the request was filed by John Maa, according to the secretary of state's office. The formal Proposition 29 campaign denied involvement in the recount. Spokesman Tim Douglas wrote in an email that "no one with any official connection to the campaign made such a request."
Logan told the newspaper his department will begin the recount process next Monday, tallying the ballots electronically before starting a manual count at midweek. He expects the recount, which could take more than a week, to cost about $5,700 a day. The campaign requesting the recount must cover that amount in daily deposits, though taxpayers pick up the tab if the process changes the outcome of the election.
The selected precincts accounted for about 48,000 of the roughly 900,000 votes cast for and against the measure in the county. The campaign can add more precincts or end the process at any time, Logan said.