More than 500 absentee ballots are yet to be counted in the to replace Jack Eddington as the next Suffolk County legislator in the 7th District.
As it stands, Democrat Rob Calarco leads Republican John Giannott by 103 votes--6,051-5,948--after the ballots were tallied on Election Day.
"Just sitting tight and waiting for the board to get going on counting the absentees," Calarco told Patch Monday.
Suffolk County Board of Elections Commissioner Wayne T. Rogers says that there are 528 absentee ballots that need to be counted in the race. Counting will begin Wednesday for legislative races. The Commissioner has not yet decided in what order the districts’ votes will be counted.
An official from the office told Patch that all of Suffolk County’s absentee ballots, approximately 10,000, are counted at the same time for all of the races. The official said that the elections' full results will be certified no later than Dec. 3.
Calarco and Giannott, when spoken to after the preliminary results were counted, said they were each optimistic that they would win the election, but also expected the possibility of a .
"I believe we had a very strong absentee ballot program we mailed to everybody," said Giannott, a political who runs two Bellport businesses. "We think we have the upper hand in the absentee ballot program."
Giannott feels that the race will ultimately be decided by fewer than 10 votes, and that his campaign has “major questions” regarding some issues reported with the new voting machines.
Calarco cautiously feels that he will remain in the lead.
“I’m still feeling very optimistic that I’m going to come out on top," said Calarco, who currently as Eddington's chief-of-staff, " but I’m not going to get ahead of myself and we are going to wait for the Board of Elections."
The 7th Legislative District includes Patchogue, Medford, Holtsville and Blue Point.