Sample recount of Nevada presidential vote changes 15 votes
December 9, 2016
After the recount demanded by presidential candidate Rocky De La Fuente, the Secretary of State's office Friday gave him some good news and some bad news.
The bad news is a recount of 5 percent of Nevada's election precincts (93 precincts selected by the candidate) saw just 15 vote changes out of 93,840 ballots cast. To justify a full recount of all Nevada ballots, there has to be a discrepancy of 1 percent or more and that tiny change is just over a tenth of 1 percent.
De La Fuente's vote total didn't change at all, nor did those of the other minor candidates or the "None of these Candidates" total.
"Accordingly, the Secretary of State finds that the statutory requirement needed to request a full statewide recount has not been satisfied," elections Deputy Wayne Thorley wrote to de La Fuente.
But the good news is the sample recount didn't cost anywhere near what the counties he chose had predicted.
De La Fuente had to put up $14,154.98 to pay the estimated cost of the recount but the actual cost, according to Thorley, was just $6,548.65. He said that means De La Fuente will get a $7,606.33 refund.
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Naturally, the biggest portion of the change was in the 84 precincts surveyed in Clark County where Hillary Clinton's victory margin decreased by 10 votes and Donald Trump's total went down by 6 votes. All those changes were found in the absentee ballots that must be hand counted, not the votes recorded by the electronic machines.
In Carson City, Douglas and Mineral counties, there were no changes identified in the selected precincts. Nye County found one absentee ballot that increased Clinton's total.
Carson City had estimated the review would cost $780, but it came in at just $98.40 to cover the cost of four recount board members for two hours time. Douglas estimated the cost at $576 but, in the end, paid just $74.25 for about five hours time from two recount board members. In Mineral County, the cost was just $30 and in Nye $32.
Clark, which estimated the total cost at $12,498.98, did the job for just $6,314, two-thirds of it in staff overtime.