County election officials prepare for possible State Senate recount

Shilling, Kapanke separated by 56 votes; Kapanke yet to request recount

La Crosse’s County Clerk is anticipating a recount in the 32nd state senate district race, but a recount hasn’t been requested yet.

The race between State Senator Jennifer Shilling and challenger Dan Kapanke came down to a difference of just 56 votes. The results of the election were changed slightly after canvassing, which allowed some provisional ballots that were issued on Election Day to be counted.

In La Crosse County, only 10 of the 28 provisional ballots that were issued ended up being counted.

County Clerk Ginny Dankmeyer says the votes that weren’t counted were thrown out because they didn’t have the necessary proof of residency.

“They didn’t provide either photo I.D. or driver’s license and they never came back to provide the necessary information, so their ballots were not counted,” said Dankmeyer. “If all 28 came back rehabilitated that could’ve made that vote either a lot wider or a lot narrower.”

If a recount does happen, the departments tabulating the results will have the option of feeding the ballots through a machine or counting them by hand. Dankmeyer says La Crosse County would do theirs by hand.

“Each ballot has to be looked at anyway before it’s put into the machine, so if you have a stack of ballots and you can just divide them out between the candidates and have them put in stacks of 25 or 50, it’ll be quicker than actually putting them through the tabulator,” said Dankmeyer.