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Miami-Dade Completes Manual Recount In Agriculture Commissioner Race

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MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) -- The Miami-Dade County Elections Department has completed its state-mandated manual recount of Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture race.

The manual recount was completed late Friday night. They completed the state-mandated manual recount for Florida's Senate race on Friday.

The manual recount tallies must be submitted to the state by noon Sunday.

Miami-Dade is leading the state recount, instead of headlines. They attribute planning and staff for their success.

The hand recount began Friday in Florida's acrimonious U.S. Senate contest after an initial review by ballot-counting machines showed Republican Gov. Rick Scott and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson separated by fewer than 13,000 votes out of more than 8 million cast.

Under state law, a hand review is required when the victory margin is 0.25 percentage points or less. A state website's unofficial results show Scott ahead of Nelson by 0.15 percentage points.

A hand recount in the Senate race does not review all votes that were cast. It only involves that fraction of ballots in which voters cast either two votes for one race, which is called an overvote, or appeared to choose no candidate, which is an undervote. The idea is to figure out a voter's intent.

At a warehouse in Broward County, which has had numerous problems throughout the election, dozens of volunteers sitting at folding tables cheered loudly when they were told they had finished the recount Friday morning for the Senate race and could go home for the day.

Volunteers will return Saturday to start the hand recount in Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture race between Republican Matt Caldwell and Democratic Nikki Fried.

The margin between Scott and Nelson had not changed much in the last few days, conceded Marc Elias, an attorney working for Nelson's campaign. But he said he expects it to shrink due to the hand recount and the ruling on signatures.

Six election-related lawsuits are pending in federal court in Tallahassee, and at least one in state court.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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