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Colorado's Congressional District 3 race won't be decided until Thursday at the earliest

Watch the Nov. 12 episode of "Left Right Center"
Watch the Nov. 12 episode of "Left Right Center" 20:05

We won't know the final results in Colorado's Congressional District 3 Race until next Thursday at the earliest.

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Republican incumbent Rep. Lauren Boebert has about an 1,100 vote lead over Democrat Adam Frisch. There's only .3 percent between the two. If the candidates are separated by .5 percent or less when all the votes are counted, there will be an automatic recount.


Pueblo County Clerk Gilbert Ortiz says election workers are done processing ballots that came in on election day but there are still hundreds of military and overseas ballots left to come in. As long as they were postmarked by Nov. 8, and are in by next Thursday, they will be counted.

Then there are provisional ballots, which are used by people whose eligibility is in question, and ballots where signatures don't match voter records. Those can be "cured" or fixed through next Thursday too. Ortiz says he also held back about 100 ballots to mix in with the military and overseas ballots to ensure the votes are anonymous.

Ortiz has been the Pueblo County Clerk for 16 years and is a native of Pueblo. He says the county is up for grabs, "The more I know about Pueblo, the less I know about how it will vote."

He says he has had watchers from both parties monitoring the tabulation process and, he says, both campaigns have also had attorneys present, "We invited them all into the process and so when I would release numbers I'd sit them all down in a group and we'd go through the numbers. That way both camps had perfect numbers and could report back to their elected official or campaign headquarters with accurate numbers. They always try to pressure me and I always tell them the same thing. This isn't politics to me. This is an election and I'm going to make sure it's as accurate and safe for my judges and staff as possible."

Ortiz has just 6 full time staff and 120 election judges. He says they've been putting in 12 hour days tabulating ballots. He expects less than a thousand military, overseas, provisional and cured ballots to come in between now and next Thursday. It's unclear how many ballots are outstanding in the other 25 counties in the district.

The 3rd District stretches from Trinidad and Pueblo all the way to Grand Junction and includes Eagle County. It favors Republicans by about 9 points and hasn't elected a Democrat to Congress since 2008.  

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