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Thursday, November 13, 2014


From left, attorney Allen Miskell, Anita Mullane, attorney J.R. Drexelius
Jr., Republican Deputy Elections Commissioner Mike Carney, and Democratic
board of elections clerk Lisa Gianquinto count absentee ballots this morning
at the Niagara County Board of Elections. (HEATHER N. GRIMMER / ENP 
After a count of absentee ballots this morning at the Niagara County Board of Elections, it has been confirmed that Anita Mullane will be the new alderman in the city's 2nd Ward.

Mullane, a Democrat, held an election-night lead over Republican Patrick Feeley by a count of 556 votes to 534. However, there were still 75 ballots to count and 45 of them had been filed by registered Republicans, while only 20 were filed by Democrats, according to the Niagara County Board of Elections. Three were cast by registered Conservatives, four from people registered with the Independence Party and another three from voters with no affiliation.

If votes had broken down purely by party affiliation, Feeley would have won the seat, but as is the case in election-day votes, absentee ballot votes don't always break by party affiliation — although they do sometimes hold closer to them, as was the case this morning.

Mullane got an additional 31 votes from the absentee ballots, while Feeley picked up another 47. One ballot had no vote in the race, a pair — one for each candidate — were not cast properly, and four others had issues that needed to be resolved by the elections commissioners. However, they won't impact the end result of the race, which is a Mullane victory.

"There's not enough in there to make a difference," said John R. Drexelius Jr., the attorney representing Feeley during the vote count.

"That was a nail biter," Mullane said. She issued a statement on her victory, thanking her supporters and vowing to fight to return the city to financial stability.

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