AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Aurora’s race for mayor could come down to several hundred ballots with signature discrepancies. Results posted Thursday afternoon on the Colorado Secretary of State website show former U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman with 26,201 votes and Omar Montgomery with 25,928 votes. Coffman’s 273 vote lead is above the threshold for an automatic recount, but that could change.
Coffman’s campaign told CBS4 there are approximately 550 Aurora ballots in Arapahoe County and 100 Aurora ballots in Adams County with signature discrepancies. The clerk’s offices in both counties have until Wednesday to cure those ballots, which could affect the outcome of the race.
Thursday night Montgomery’s campaign released a statement, refusing to concede the election. Montgomery stated, “We are going to ensure that every vote gets counted. We owe it to our community.”
Coffman holds 35.83% of the vote and Montgomery has 35.46%. Three other candidates ran in this year’s race: Marsha Berzins, Ryan L. Frazier and Renie Roberta Peterson.
In a tweet Thursday, the Arapahoe County Clerk said it has about 1,000 ballots for the whole county that need to be cured before they can be counted.
Unofficial results are up! We have counted all remaining ballots, except for about 1000 ballots awaiting cures for signatures. We’ll process those ballots as they are cured.
— Arapahoe Clerk (@ArapahoeClerk) November 7, 2019
Ballots with signature discrepancies need to be corrected within eight days. A cure letter will be sent home to voters for them to fill out and return before Wednesday.
Coffman, a Republican, earned the endorsement of the Aurora Lodge 49 Fraternal Order of Police earlier this year. He owned a small business in Aurora for 17 years before representing the city in the state House of Representatives and the state Senate. After that he served as the Colorado State Treasurer, the Colorado Secretary of State and then served several terms as Colorado’s 6th Congressional District representative.
Democrat Omar Montgomery, former president of the Aurora NAACP as well as an educator at the University of Colorado Denver and director for the Center for Identity and Inclusion, received endorsements from the Greater Metro Denver Ministerial Alliance and the Colorado Black Women for Political Action, NARAL Pro-Choice, the Sierra Club and Conservation Colorado, former US attorney Eric Holder, anti-gun violence advocate Gabby Giffords and Moms Demand Action.