Republican drops his request for a recount in Maine congressional race

Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-Maine) called for an end to the recount of his Maine congressional race Friday.  

"Although we continue to evaluate the legal process and the need for an Appeal on the Constitutionality of ranked voting, due to the impending Holidays, I believe it's important to end the recount process," Poliquin wrote. 

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Poliquin lost his reelection bid to Jared Golden (D) on Nov. 6 in the first congressional election determined by ranked-choice voting, but the Republican requested a recount of the vote.

Ranked-choice voting requires voters to submit a ballot that ranks candidates in order of preference.

If no candidates initially receive 50 percent of the vote, then the candidate with the fewest first-place votes is eliminated and those votes are reallocated to the voters' second choices. 

Poliquin had challenged the legality of ranked-choice voting, but saw his lawsuit tossed out Thursday.

"To the extent that the Plaintiffs call into question the wisdom of using RCV, they are free to do so but for the reasons that I have indicated previously and upon which I elaborate presently, such criticism falls short of constitutional impropriety,” U.S. District Judge Lance Walker wrote in his ruling.

“A majority of Maine voters have rejected that criticism and Article I (of the U.S. Constitution) does not empower this Court to second guess the considered judgment of the polity on the basis of the tautological observation that RCV may suffer from problems, as all voting systems do,” the Trump appointee explained.

In his statement withdrawing the request for a recount, Poliquin said that he was still considering another challenge to the voting system.

“Maine people continue to write and approach me with grave concerns over rank voting,” he tweeted. “I understand their concerns, and the need for our elections to be transparent and fair.”

Despite the end of a recount, Poliquin did not concede, citing the 2,000 vote lead he had before re-tabulation.

Representatives from Golden's campaign did not immediately respond to The Hill's request for comment on Poliquin's statement.