It’s Buerkle for 25th Congressional District
Three weeks (to the day) after the voting ended, the election results are finally known in the 25th Congressional District.
With Democrat Congressman Dan Maffei conceding the race in a phone call to his Republican opponent, Ann Marie Buerkle, she will be the newest member of Congress and the first woman in that seat from this district. It was a close and highly contested race.
Buerkle finally won with 567 votes over one-term incumbent Maffei.
“I congratulate Congresswoman-elect Buerkle and her supporters and family,” Maffei said in a statement. “I wish her luck in the new Republican majority.” Maffei said in his concession speech.
In his statement, he also congratulated his constituents. “I am deeply and forever grateful for the opportunity to serve you during the past two years. When I won the Congressional seat, I pledged to give it my all everyday and I did just that.”
The calculating of ballots and recanvassing under the watchful eyes of many, continued over these three weeks with Maffei close to ordering a hand recount and challenging the validity of over 390 absentee ballots.
Even if all of his challenged ballots had been thrown out, it was obvious that the numbers would not be enough to give him a win. In the end, it was Wayne County Republicans who put Buerkle over the top.
Unofficial numbers in Wayne County were 15,530 to 9,253 in Buerkle’s favor after election night. Wayne County added 790 more Absentee Ballots for Buerkle after counting ended on Sunday. Ann Marie also bested Maffei in Monroe County, with 19,987 votes on election night and added 784 Absentee Ballots in that County. Maffei recorded 16,426 on election night and 671 absentee ballots in Monroe County. Although Dan did win the overall and Absentee numbers in Onondaga County, it was not enough to carry the other three counties (including Cayuga). The total unofficial numbers overall were: Dan Maffei: 103,807 and Ann Marie Buerkle 104,374.
In her acceptance speech on Tuesday evening, Ann Marie thanked Congressman Maffei for his service for the last two years, and for his promise that his staff would work with Buerkle’s staff for a seamless transition. She thanked the Commissioners of the Boards of Elections in all four counties (Wayne, Monroe, Cayuga and Onondaga) for the big burden that was placed on them; and she thanked the electorate for their patience throughout the process.
“The process does work. It is not broken,” she stated. Buerkle reminded everyone that it was the “message not the money” that won the race. “Now we can get on with the business at hand, and focus on jobs and the economy in Upstate New York.”
Buerkle is well on her way to serving the District, as she has been attending freshmen congress initiation training meetings in Washington on the assumption that she would win the race.
Congressman Maffei will serve out his term through December 31, 2010.