Absentee ballot counting begins in Nassau; Suffolk to start next week
Absentee ballots could decide some key races that are still close to call over a week after Election Day. The Nassau Board of Elections finally started counting those ballots Thursday.
There are 154,000 absentee ballots being counted in Nassau and 168,000 will be counted later in Suffolk. Nassau Board of Elections Democratic Commissioner Jim Scheuerman says their figures are three to four times more than they've ever processed.
News 12 was there as a challenge was made on an affidavit ballot.
"So at every table we see, there's two Republicans and two Democrats, right?" says Scheuerman. "There's two Board of Elections employees, a Republican and a Democrat, and two watchers, one from each party."
The outcome of the counting of absentee ballots will determine the winner of a number of races in both counties, including in the 3rd Congressional District, where Rep. Tom Suozzi is the incumbent.
Officials are hoping that the final count will be in within 10 days, which would be right before Thanksgiving.
Suffolk County plans to start its absentee counting process Monday. When asked why they're waiting until Monday when they legally were allowed to start Tuesday, Suffolk Republican Board of Elections Commissioner Nick LaLota said, "In this business, accuracy is way, way better than speed."
Suffolk says it may take until after Thanksgiving before they can certify a number of races.