Maloney, Torres declare victory in NY primary races after weeks of delays

Maloney, Torres declare victory in NY primary races after weeks of delays
© Bonnie Cash

Rep. Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn Bosher MaloneyPelosi, Democrats unveil bills to rein in alleged White House abuses of power Government watchdog recommends creation of White House cyber director position Top Democrats call for DOJ watchdog to probe Barr over possible 2020 election influence MORE (D) and Ritchie Torres have declared victory in their respective New York congressional races after a primary whose results were plagued by six weeks of delays.

The New York City Board of Elections on Tuesday declared Maloney the winner of her primary race in the city's 12th Congressional District, and Torres the victor in the 15th Congressional District.

The Associated Press, which has yet to call either race, currently has Torres, a New York City councilmember, up 11 points over his nearest opponent, and Maloney just 1.5 percentage points above two-time challenger Suraj Patel, who has yet to concede.

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The Washington Post reported that New York State Board of Elections Commissioner and Co-Chair Douglas Kellner issued a memo Tuesday admitting the board had not “deploy[ed] sufficient resources to mail out absentee ballots in a timely manner."

Earlier Tuesday, a federal judge ordered the Elections Board to count more than a thousand absentee ballots that had initially been disqualified, after delays and confusion around postmarking. The Associated Press then began reporting updated vote counts after weeks of unchanging tallies.

"It’s official. We won! It is the honor of a lifetime to be able to serve our community in Washington DC. The counting took longer than expected, but today the @BOENYC certified our victory & I want to say thank you..," Torres tweeted on Tuesday night.

He is the favorite to win against Republican Orlando Molina in his safe blue district, replacing retiring Rep. José Serrano (D-N.Y.), and would become the first openly LGBTQ Afro-Latino member of Congress.

Maloney's team said the representative won "with a decisive winning margin after all valid absentee ballots were counted."

The congresswoman said lessons from the primary should be applied to November's races, calling for increased post office funding, election oversight and "an end to measures taken by the President that might impact timely delivery of applications or ballots."

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Maloney had called for opponent Patel's concession in a tweet Tuesday morning, but the Post reported that Patel said he would not concede until remaining ballots are counted.

Maloney would square off against Republican Eliot Rabin as she runs for a fifteenth term in Congress in November. In 2018, Maloney defeated Rabin by 74 points.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments Ocasio-Cortez: Trump contributed less in taxes 'than waitresses and undocumented immigrants' Third judge orders Postal Service to halt delivery cuts MORE seized on the 12th Congressional District race as an example of the “disaster” of mail-in balloting.

"It's a mess. Nobody knows what's happening," Trump said Monday of Maloney's race.

Nationwide primary elections have caused some concern around a lack of sufficient infrastructure to handle mail-in voting come November's general elections, but experts agree there is no increased risk of voter fraud.