Archive for Wednesday, August 2, 2000

47th District tied; recount scheduled

August 2, 2000

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At midnight, Democratic primary contenders Lana Leach and Bruce Hanson each had 348 votes in the race to represent their party in the general election race for the 47th Kansas House District seat.

The apparent tie meant election officials will continue to count and recount the ballots today.

"We'll be in contact with Douglas and Jefferson counties in the morning," said Brad Bryant, a spokesman for the Kansas Secretary of State's Office. "We'll try to confirm the numbers then."

Reports of the tie confounded both candidates.

"I don't want to say anything tonight," Hanson said. "I'd rather wait until morning, when we'll know what the official numbers are."

Leach said, "I want to wait. I really don't know what to say, this has never happened to me before."

The winner will face Lee Tafanelli, an Ozawkie Republican. Tafanelli won the GOP primary, defeating Kenny McNeill 1,387 votes to 570.

Tafanelli, who was endorsed by retiring incumbent Rep. Joann Flower, R-Oskaloosa, won almost 75 percent of the vote. He could not be reached for comment.

McNeill spent election night with friends near Salina. A trip to western Kansas went awry, keeping him from making it home for the election.

"I was in western Kansas visiting my sister over the weekend," he said. "My car broke down, and I couldn't make it back."

McNeill, who lives in Perry, said he didn't even get to vote Monday.

The 47th House district is mostly in Jefferson County, but two precincts extend into northeastern Douglas County.

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