A Michigan Republican county official has won re-election in a race that he conceded earlier this week, thinking he lost by about 100 votes — but a fixed computer glitch has since put him back in the lead.
The Detroit Free Press reports:
In Oakland County’s 15th county commission District — representing Rochester and Rochester Hills — the initial count gave a 104-vote margin to the Democrat, Melanie Hartman, amounting to a razor-thin majority of 50.08%. That stunned the incumbent, Adam Kochenderfer, giving him a sure sense that he’d lost in a district long deemed a Republican stronghold. […] But what a difference a day makes – in weather, love, and the 15th District election for Oakland County commissioner. On Thursday, Kochenderfer was stunned again, this time by a call from Oakland County’s director of elections, flipping the outcome to him.
“I thought that was that,” Kochenderfer told the newspaper. “Those were the results, and I said I would not seek a recount.”
“Apparently, there was a technical glitch in Rochester Hills. And so, I actually ended up winning by a little over 1,100 votes,” he added.
In fact, the margin was 1,127 votes, giving Kochenderfer a 51.67% share of total votes. Hartman received a 48.23% share of total votes.
Kochenderfer expressed concern that the glitch could cause further distrust in the country’s election process.
“I’m very grateful to the officials who caught the error, but we need to ensure that we catch these issues, or prevent them entirely,” he said.
“People are acting like fixing our elections is a partisan thing when it shouldn’t be partisan.” he added. “We do have a very, very good clerk in Rochester Hills.”
Oakland County Director of Elections Joe Rozell blamed the glitch on the Rochester Hills city clerk’s office.
“A computer issue in Rochester Hills caused them to send us results for seven precincts as both precinct votes and absentee votes. They should only have been sent to us as absentee votes,” he told the newspaper in a text message.