Nov. 12, 2002 – Elections Supervisor John Abramson Jr. issued a release on Tuesday stating that the absentee ballots for the Nov. 5 general election will be counted on Saturday in the Election System of the Virgin Islands offices on St. Thomas and St. Croix.
The ballots for the St. Thomas-St. John district will be tabulated at the headquarters on Crystal Gade and those for the St. Croix district will be tallied at the offices in the Sunny Isles Annex, in both cases beginning at 9 a.m., Abramson said.
All candidates in the election or their designated representatives may be present to observe the hand-counting process, the release stated.
The governor's race and both Senate district contests have critical outcomes riding on the results of the absentee tabulations.
Abramson said earlier that a total of 1,274 absentee ballots were sent out — 659 on St. Thomas and 615 on St. Croix. To be counted, the returned ballots must have been postmarked on election day, Nov. 5, and must be received within 10 days of that, or Nov. 15, which is Friday.
The absentee votes for governor will determine whether incumbent Charles W. Turnbull has secured a majority of the votes cast in the election. Unofficial election night returns show him with 50.46 percent of the vote. A majority is 50 percent plus one of the total votes cast.
If Turnbull holds on to a majority when the absentee votes are tabulated, he will have won the election — pending resolution of any formal protests. If the absentee tally lowers Turnbull's portion of the total votes to less than a majority, a runoff election will be held three days later, on Nov. 19, between him and the second-place finisher in the race, John de Jongh Jr.
In both Senate districts, the top seven finishers will be elected to the 25th Legislature, again pending resolution of any formal protests.
In the St. Thomas-St. John district, the unofficial election night figures show the following top nine finishers:
Adlah "Foncie" Donastorg – 8,726
Carlton "Ital" Dowe – 7,512
Celestino A. White Sr. – 6,642
Roosevelt St. C. David – 6,490
Louis P. Hill – 6,392
Lorraine L. Berry – 6,365
Shawn-Michael Malone – 5,951
Donald "Ducks" Cole – 5,932
Norma Pickard-Samuel – 5,455
With the 659 absentee votes, there is a mathematical possibility that Cole and Pickard-Samuel could displace Malone and Berry, although the likelihood is remote.
In the St. Croix Senate race, the unofficial election night figures show these as the top 10 finishers:
Douglas E. Canton Jr. – 6,459
Luther F. Renee – 6,401
Norman Jn Baptiste – 6,183
David S. Jones – 6,039
Ronald E. Russell – 5,819
Emmett Hansen II – 5,422
Raymond "Usie" Richards – 5,378
Adelbert M. "Bert" Bryan – 5,248
Juan Figueroa-Serville – 5,003
Ophelia "Nemmy" Williams-Felix – 4,772
With the 615 absentee votes, there is, again, a mathematical possibility that Bryan, Figueroa-Serville and Williams-Felix could displace Richards, Hansen and Russell.
After tallying the absentee votes, the Joint Boards of Elections will certify the official returns.
For additional information about the absentee ballot counting or the tabulation process, call the Elections System offices at 774-3107 or 773-1021.
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