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Elrich Wins Recount

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Blair won’t explicitly say he’ll back Elrich in the November general election

County Executive Democratic candidate Marc Elrich (left) wins recount; fellow Democratic candidate David Blair conceded defeat. FILE PHOTOCounty Executive Democratic candidate Marc Elrich (left) wins recount; fellow Democratic candidate David Blair conceded defeat. FILE PHOTOS Less than a week after asking the Board of Elections for a recount, County Executive Democratic candidate David Blair conceded defeat this week, as a recount held that Marc Elrich remains the winner of the Democratic Primary.

While Blair asked the County Board of Elections for a recount last week – citing concerns about voters being purged from the rolls due to a computer glitch within the Motor Vehicle Association database – Blair formally conceded this week after the recount he requested failed to change the outcome of the election.

“The outcome of the recount wasn't surprising. The outcome of the election is a disappointment...our message clearly resonated with many people across the County, and we came within a whisker of winning,” Blair said.

Blair and Elrich were locked in a closely-contested primary that took almost two weeks to decide, as the Election Day vote total had Elrich ahead of Blair by fewer than 500 votes. Elrich’s lead would slowly slip, as Board of Elections officials began counting thousands of absentee and provisional ballots that decreased his lead.

When election officials counted all the votes, however, they declared Elrich the winner, with just 79 more votes than Blair, which Blair contested. On Monday, Blair called Elrich, conceding the election.

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Blair Demands Recount

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Second place finisher for Democratic nomination for County Executive lost by 79 votes

David Blair  FILE PHOTODavid Blair. FILE PHOTOOn Tuesday, Democratic Candidate for Montgomery County Executive and businessman David Blair said he plans to request a recount from the Montgomery County Board of Elections.

Blair, who lost the Democratic Primary to Council member Marc Elrich (D-at large), said in a letter to supporters that given how close the race was, it is worth requesting a recount. On Monday, the Montgomery County Board of Elections certified Elrich’s victory, as he defeated Blair by 79 votes.

“We share the desire to have a nominee chosen in a timely manner so the party can come together and prepare for the General Election,” Blair said. “On the other hand, we fully believe that participation in the electoral process is the hallmark of our democracy, and it is imperative that all ballots are accurately counted.”

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Elrich wins by 80 votes

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Board of Elections still needs to certify closest County Executive race in recent memory

Council member Marc Elrich.  FILE PHOTOCouncil member Marc Elrich. FILE PHOTO  With all the ballots counted, Council member Marc Elrich is the unofficial winner of the Democratic Primary for Montgomery County Executive.

After days of vote-counting, and a race that was too close to call on Election Night, Elrich edged businessman David Blair by just 80 votes after Montgomery County Board of Elections officials finished counting ballots late Sunday evening.

With all ballots counted, Elrich has 37,529 votes, with 29.02 percent of the total count, while Blair came in second, with 37,449 and 28.95 percent of the vote.

The results are unofficial as the Montgomery County Board of Elections has yet to certify the results, which it will do during its meeting on July 16, but as of now Elrich is the leading vote-getter with no more ballots yet to be counted.

“I’m excited, there’s a lot of work to do... but I’m excited to have the opportunity to take that on,” Elrich told the Sentinel shortly after he learned of the results.

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Elrich unofficial winner of Democratic Primary for County Executive

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County Councilman Marc Elrich with some of his supporters at his watch party on Primary Night.  PHOTO BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREVCounty Councilman Marc Elrich with some of his supporters at his watch party on Primary Night. PHOTO BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREV  With all ballots counted, Council member Marc Elrich is the unofficial winner of the Democratic Primary for Montgomery County Executive.

After days of vote counting, and a race that was too close to call on election night, Elrich edges businessman David Blair by just 80 votes after Montgomery County Board of Elections officials finished counting ballots late Sunday evening.

With all ballots counted, Elrich has 37,529 votes with 29.02 percent of the total count, while Blair came in second with 37,449 and 28.95 percent of the vote.

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Elrich lead shrinks to 149

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Council member Marc Elrich still leads David Blair for County Executive spot

County Council member Marc Elrich leads businessman David Blair by 149 votes in the race for the County Executive Democratic nomination.  FILE PHOTOMarc Elrich (left) leads David Blair by 149 votes in the Democratic slot for November's County Executive race. FILE PHOTOMore than a week after elections, the Democratic Primary for County Executive is still too close to call.

Election night and early-voting totals originally had Council member Marc Elrich (D-at large) in the lead by fewer than 500 votes to businessman David Blair. Now that lead has shrunk to just 149 votes, as County election officials continue to count absentee votes.

On Thursday County election officials will count the remaining 2,600 Democratic provisional ballots. On Friday, the Board of Elections staff will count the remaining absentee ballots, which they should complete by Saturday, a likely time when there will be a projected winner in the County Executive Democratic Primary.

“At that time, I expect we will still be opening ballots...and tabulating through Saturday July 7,” said Alysoun McLaughlin, deputy election director for the Montgomery County Board of Elections.

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Nancy Floreen files for County Exec as independent

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Nancy Floreen.  FILE PHOTO  Nancy Floreen. FILE PHOTO  Montgomery County Council member Nancy Floreen (D-at large), has filed her declaration of intent to run for Montgomery County Executive as an independent candidate according to documents she filed with the Montgomery County Board of Elections on Monday.

Floreen, who declined to answer question when reached, released a statement saying she is waiting for the final votes to be counted in the Democratic Primary before she makes her final decision as to whether she will run as an independent candidates for County Executive.

“I believe ALL Democrats, Republicans, and independents would benefit from a third, independent choice,” Floreen said in a statement. “I will announce my final decision on candidacy once all the primary votes for County Executive have been tabulated and certified.”

While Floreen filed her paperwork declaring her intent to run for County Executive as an independent, she said she would have rather waited for there to be a clear winner in the Democratic Primary before she made a final decision, but had to file to her declaration of intent to run before the July 2 deadline.

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"Too Close to Call"

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Marc Elrich currently leads David Blair by only 149 votes for County Executive spot

County Executive candidates, left to right, Marc Elrich and David Blair speak to their supporters Tuesday night; the election results are still too close to call. PHOTOS BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREV AND GEORGE SMITH  County Executive candidates, left to right, Marc Elrich and David Blair speak to their supporters Tuesday night; the election results are still too close to call.         PHOTOS BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREV AND GEORGE SMITH  The Democratic Primary for Montgomery County Executive is too close to call.

County Council member Marc Elrich currently leads businessman David Blair by just under 150 votes, with 14,902 absentee ballots and 3,614 provisional ballots yet to be counted.

"I'm in a race against a guy who spent uncounted millions, a newspaper that strayed from reporting and just strictly made everything editorial and a group of developers that just spent a lot of money to make sure that I didn't get elected ... and it doesn't look like they've succeeded."

With all the votes from Election Day and early voting counted, Elrich currently has 36,117 votes to Blair’s 35,968 votes, but votes from absentee and provisional ballots have yet to be counted. The winner of the Democratic Primary will face Republican Robin Ficker, who ran unopposed in the Republican Primary in November’s General Election.

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County Executive candidates continue pitches to voters

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County Executive Forum Bnai Israel Mens Club 613County Executive candidates speak during forum at B’nai Israel Congregation. PHOTO BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREVROCKVILLE — As the June 26 primary election for County Executive approaches, candidates continued to lay out their platforms in front of voters at the B’nai Israel Congregation last Wednesday.

Hosted by the B’nai Israel Men’s Club, the candidates received questions on immigration, transportation, and economic development from Jonathan Salant, a journalist for The Star-Ledger, a New Jersey-based newspaper.

The forum featured current Council members Marc Elrich, George Leventhal (both at-large), Roger Berliner (District 1), former Rockville Mayor Rose Krasnow, Del. Bill Frick (District 16), businessman David Blair – all vying for the Democratic nomination – and lone Republican Robin Ficker.

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County Executive race sees its first attack ad

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A clip from the ad released by County Council member Roger Berliner attacking fellow County Executive candidate David Blair.  COURTESY PHOTOA clip from an ad released by County Council member Roger Berliner attacking fellow County Executive candidate David Blair. COURTESY PHOTO  BETHESDA — As the primary approaches, democrats running for County Executive continue to try and jockey for position attempting to appeal to local voters and to be gain attention, one candidate ran the first “attack ad” against an opponent.

Recently, County Council member and candidate for County Executive Roger Berliner (D-1) released an ad attacking one of his opponents, businessman David Blair, with the narrator in the ad saying Blair is a “another rich guy with zero experience, spending his millions to buy this election,” with a black-and-white photo of Blair morphing into a photo of Donald Trump.

But when a new resident to the County asked Berliner at a forum in Bethesda about who was most progressive and who was most conservative among the candidates, Berliner decided to answer the question by giving positive aspects of each candidate – including Blair.

“David Blair has been a successful businessman,” Berliner told the forum, running through the accomplishments of each one of his Democratic opponents.

This is one of the first ads in the County Executive race to directly attack another opponent.

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Up-County issues take center stage in Darnestown debate

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DARNESTOWN — With the June 26 primary closing in, candidates for County Executive continued their campaign tour to the up-County, this time making their pitch to voters in Darnestown.

While most of the County Executive forums have featured only the Democratic candidates running for office, the forum hosted by the Darnestown Civic Association included the County’s sole Republican candidate – Robin Ficker – as five of the candidates squared off to woo voters in one of the more rural parts of Montgomery County.

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