Spokane City Councilman Richard Rush said Saturday he has decided against paying for a hand recount in his race against Mike Allen.
Rush said that after further consideration of the results of the machine recount, as well as the hand recount that was completed in the 4th Legislative District Senate race last week, he decided it was highly unlikely that a hand recount would change the outcome of his race.
The hand recount had been scheduled to start on Tuesday.
The council race for the city’s south district was recounted by machine because the gap between Allen and Rush was 88 votes, less than half a percentage point. After ballots were run through the counting machines again, Allen’s lead increased to 91. In the hand recount in the state Senate race that was paid for by losing candidate Jeff Baxter, results barely changed.
“That was valuable information that I hadn’t been able to thoroughly process,” Rush said.
State law requires races be recounted by hand only when they are within a quarter of a percentage point, but candidates can request hand recounts at their own expense.
Rush had been concerned about the number of voters in the district who opted not to make a choice in the contest, and donors gave more than $6,000 to the Spokane County Democratic Party to cover the cost of the recount.
“I don’t think the manual recount would be a wise use of their money,” Rush said.
He said he left a message for Allen on Saturday afternoon to congratulate him.
Asked what his plans are, Rush said: “I plan to think about my plans.”
“It’s a relief to put this behind me and think about the future.”