Florida's governor vote now within recount range

Ron DeSantis' lead over Andrew Gillum down to 38,515

By Steve Patrick - News4Jax digital managing editor, Associated Press
Photos by AP, Getty Images

Ron DeSantis with wife Casey makes victory speech to supporters in Orlando. Andrew Gillum was accompanied by his lieutenant governor candidate Chris King and both their wives as he conceded defeat in Tallahassee.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - As mail-in and provisional ballots continue to be counted in Florida's gubernatorial race, the margin between Republican Ron DeSantis and Democrat Andrew Gillum has fallen below the state's threshold to trigger a recount.

Gillum's campaign said Thursday it's prepared for a possible recount in the Florida governor race that he conceded to DeSantis on Tuesday night. In a statement Thursday, Gillum's campaign said it underestimated the ballots that still needed to be counted when he conceded.

Florida law requires a recount if the margin is less than one-half of 1 percent unless the trailing candidate says in writing that he or she doesn't want a recount. Canvassing boards conduct the recount by running ballots through vote tabulation machines.

As of 3 p.m. Wednesday, DeSantis led Gillum by 38,511 votes out of nearly 8.2 million cast, or a difference of 0.47 percentage.

If these margins hold up through Saturday, when preliminary results are due to the Florida Secretary of State's office, the governor's race will join likely recounts in the U.S. Senate race between incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Gov. Rick Scott, which has a margin of 0.27 percent, and the Florida agriculture commissioner race between Democrat Nikki Fried and Republican Matt Caldwell, where 575 votes separate the two candidates.

HOW IT WORKS: Procedure, timeline for post-election counting, recount

In a conference call with county supervisors of elections earlier Thursday, Secretary of State Ken Detzner told them to prepare for multiple recounts.

"The recounts will be nationally watched ... (we're) under a microscope," Detzner told the county officials, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Full statement from the Gillum for Governor campaign

On Tuesday night, the Gillum for Governor campaign operated with the best information available about the number of outstanding ballots left to count. Since that time, it has become clear there are many more uncounted ballots than was originally reported. Our campaign, along with our attorney Barry Richard, is monitoring the situation closely and is ready for any outcome, including a state-mandated recount. Mayor Gillum started his campaign for the people, and we are committed to ensuring every single vote in Florida is counted."

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