Progressive Summer Lee Declares Victory In Democratic Primary, But Officials Say Results Won’t Be Clear Until Friday
Summer Lee‘s supporters in Pennsylvania’s 12th District U.S. Democratic primary have declared victory over Steve Irwin, but officials report that the results of the competitive race won’t be clear for a few more days.
Memory sticks were locked in voting scanners, leaving a small number of votes to still be counted. Obtaining and reading the memory sticks is a process that can take up to six days to complete. Officials also say that this is a normal occurrence during elections and that the issue is only being brought to attention because of the competitive nature of the race. As of Wednesday morning, Lee was winning by just 446 votes, which is less than half a percentage point.
Lee joined her supporters in announcing her victory, along with Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey (D).
“We know we have won,” Gainey said to Lee’s supporters. “Tonight is her victory, but tonight is our celebration.
“We believe that every vote counts,” he added. “But we know that the votes [that are left] are ours.”
Irwin has not yet conceded.
“We need to respect the process of counting the ballots and make sure that every single vote is counted,” his campaign said in a statement. “Unfortunately, that may take a few more days. But I am confident it won’t take much longer.”
Lee and Irwin ran on similar issues, but Lee was more outspoken about environmental justice, coming down hard on fracking.
Pennsylvania’s redrawn 12th District covers Pittsburgh and its’ suburbs to the south expanding on the area that retiring Rep. Mike Doyle (D) represents.