Roy Moore isn’t ruling out asking for a recount in his failed bid for the U.S. Senate. That doesn’t mean it will happen or is even allowed, however. Moore lost to Democrat Doug Jones on Tuesday night by some 20,000 votes – 650,436 votes, or 48 percent, to 671,151, or 50 percent. Moore has refused to concede the race to Jones, saying he will wait until all provisional and military ballots are counted and the race is certified. According to Secretary of State John Merrill, the final results will be certified no earlier than Dec. 26 and no later than Jan. 3. Moore hopes the margin is close enough – under 0.5 percent – to trigger an automatic recount. “Realize when the vote is this close, it’s not over,” Moore told supporters Tuesday night. “And we still got to go by the rules about this recount provision. It’s not over, and it’s going to take some time.”
If the final total – including provisional and military ballots – are counted and the difference between the two candidates is less than 0.5 percent, an automatic recount provision could be triggered unless waived by the losing candidate. The state would pay for the recount.
Merrill said he does not believe the final count will change the total to within the automatic recount margin.
“I know a lot of people would say it’s never over until it’s over, but the margin of victory for Doug Jones at this particular time looks like a very difficult amount of votes to overcome as the remaining votes that are out there to be counted next week begin to be considered at the local level,” Merrill told CNN.