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July 9, 2020 - 1:07pm

Candidates declaring victory, admitting defeat, as public waits for release of vote counts

posted by Howard B. Owens in Elections, NY-27, news, Chris Jacobs, Nate McMurray, Jacqualine Berger.

Not all the votes are counted yet -- delayed by the massive number of mail-in ballots filed -- but some candidates from the June 23 election are sounding confident of the outcome.

Chris Jacobs seems to believe he's won the NY-27 while Nate McMurray seems sure he's lost and Jacqualine Berger has declared victory in the Democratic primary for the 61st State Senate District.

Richard Siebert, the Republican commissioner for the Genesee County Board of Elections, said it will be 24 to 48 hours before local unofficial results will be released.

That said, based on what he's seen so far, it looks like McMurray will have 400 more votes locally from mail-in ballots than Jacobs in the special election to fill the unexpired term of convicted criminal Chris Collins. 

Siebert believes McMurray won every precinct in the City of Batavia.

Still, that won't be enough for McMurray to close the gap on in-person voting on June 23, when McMurray polled only 1,565 votes in Genesee County to 4,536 to Jacobs.

Results also aren't released yet for other counties but the campaigns typically have poll watchers in place during vote counting so they have some idea what to expect when tallies are released.

Last night, Jacobs released this statement:

"With the counting completed today and the outcome reaffirmed, I’m eager to get to work for the people of Western New York as their representative in Congress. I care deeply about this community and I will do all I can to serve it with honesty and integrity. I would also like to personally thank each Board of Election member and employee who worked tirelessly throughout this process and the entire election season. Conducting an election under these circumstances was challenging for all involved and I appreciate the sacrifices made.”

McMurray has not released a statement but he did tweet about the election outcome.

In the State Senate primary, Democrat Jan Berger released this statement:

Educator Jacqualine Berger has declared victory in the Democratic Primary Election to run for the New York State Senate seat vacated by longtime Republican State Senator Michael Ranzenhofer. Berger was victorious against Kim Smith, formerly of the Monroe County Department of Public Health, and Joan Elizabeth Seamans, a small-business owner. 

The race was too-close-to-call on the night of the election. After all the votes were tallied, Berger edged Smith by 141 votes. Berger received 9,246 votes (39%), while Smith earned 9,105 (38%) and Seamans received 5,475 votes (23%).  

“I am honored to have won this close election against two outstanding candidates. I congratulate both of my opponents for running strong campaigns under challenging circumstances,” said State Senate candidate Jacqualine Berger. “I am looking forward to the general election campaign, where we can work together to give the district the representation it deserves.”

Erie County Democratic Committee Chairman Jeremy Zellner said, “We endorsed Jacqualine Berger because she understands the needs of the 61st State Senate district. I am proud of her victory in the Primary Election and look forward to supporting her this fall. The Democratic Party is united like never before, and ready to take on the Republican extremists.”   

Jacqualine Berger is the Deputy Supervisor in the Town of Amherst and an educator at Empire State College. Berger has a master’s degree in Early Childhood and Special Education from Tulane University. She is a lifelong advocate for individuals with special needs, running a local Challenger Baseball program for children and adults with disabilities since 1991. In 2019, Empire State College awarded Berger the Altes Prize for Exemplary Community Service.

Berger will face politician Ed Rath in the election this fall.

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