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Soubirous, Pursuing a Runoff, Will Ask Recount

March 19, 2004|Seema Mehta | Times Staff Writer

Linda Soubirous, who ran for the Riverside County Board of Supervisors this month and missed forcing a November runoff by less than a tenth of a percentage point, said she would demand a recount.

In the three-way race to represent the county's first district, incumbent Bob Buster received 50.09% of the 49,175 votes cast, while Soubirous got 34.51% and former Lake Elsinore councilman Kevin Pape got 15.4%.

Had Buster not received more than half the vote, he and Soubirous would have faced off in the November election.

"It was so close," Soubirous said. "We were 45 votes away from a runoff."

She said her concern grew after reading a Caltech/MIT report about flaws in voting equipment, including electronic devices similar to the machines used in Riverside County.

On Thursday, Soubirous filed a request with Registrar of Voters Mischelle Townsend to be notified as soon as the Board of Supervisors certifies the results of the March election. Once it is, she will have five days to request the recount.

"I want to make sure every vote that is supposed to be counted is counted," Soubirous said.

Attempts to reach Buster and Townsend for comment were unsuccessful.

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