Fulton County Board of Election officials Tuesday said only 14 additional absentee ballots postmarked by June 28 have been received and will be counted for the party primary elections — not enough votes to overcome Johnstown City Attorney Michael Poulin’s 82-vote lead over Acting Fulton County District Attorney Amanda Nellis on Election Night in the Republican Party primary.
Fulton County Democratic Election Commissioner G. Jerry Ryan said the votes will be counted today. He said the board sent out 820 total absentee ballots for the primary elections. He said a new state election law required that the 457 absentee ballots received by Election Day were counted that day and included within the unofficial totals posted June 28. He said the total number of absentee ballots received for the Fulton County primary should be 471.
“We send out more than we get back all of the time,” he said. “We’ve had between 800 and 1,000 [absentee ballots sent out] over the last three elections.”
Nellis said Tuesday that she’s waiting until the release of the official count before conceding the primary. She said she will be appearing on the November ballot regardless of the outcome in the primary because she successfully filed an independent party petition. She said the name of her independent party is the “Real Experience” party.
“During the campaign, it was very positive, people were very supportive,” Nellis said, of the GOP primary. “It was unfortunate the way the Republican primary came out, at least on my end, but right now we’re going to regroup and going to figure out what the next step is.”
Poulin said he’s grateful for the support he received in the GOP primary. He said, prior to the primary election, he was also able to secure a position on the Conservative Party line, despite Fulton County not having a Conservative Party committee. He said he applied to the New York state Conservative Party committee and received permission to be on that line, and he also gathered the required number of signatures and submitted them to the Fulton County Board of Elections.
“I thought I had great support, and we put a good team together, and there was really good turnout,” Poulin said. “I’ve met a lot of great people in Fulton County, and I’m sure I’ll meet a lot more over the next few months. Our campaign was really positive, and it was a good experience, and I really had a great time, and I guess we’ve got a few more months of doing it.”