After the polls closed in California’s 39th congressional district Republican Young Kim was declared the winner by almost all media outlets given her lead of nearly 4000 votes. The victory was cited as a historical one given Kim would be the first Korean woman elected to the U.S. Congress. Ah, but then more ballots were discovered that inexplicably and overwhelmingly favored her Democrat opponent, Those ballots were processed and Kim’s lead was slashed from more than 4000 to just over 700 in a matter of a few days.
(Democrat Gil Cisneros (L) is facing Republican Young Kim (R) in the open race in California’s 39th congressional district)
On Tuesday, Republican candidate Young Kim saw her lead over Democrat Gil Cisneros narrow to just 711 votes from 1, 957 on Monday as the mail-in ballots counted after Election Day have leaned heavily in Cisneros’ favor. Kim, a former state assemblywoman aide to outgoing Rep. Ed Royce, led by nearly 4,000 votes when the polls closed on Nov. 6th.
After initially accusing the Cisneros campaign of being “rebuked” by the Los Angeles Registrar and County Clerk’s offices for alleged ballot tampering on Sunday, the Kim campaign took the allegations a step further after Cisneros gained more ground on Monday.
“The Gil Cisneros Campaign has been desperate to influence and alter the outcome of this race by harassing and intimidating vote counters in Orange County,” the campaign said Monday. “Those nefarious actions reflect a campaign…that will do anything in their desperate effort to change the results.”
They also asserted that Kim’s initial lead should be reflected in the results of the mail-in and provisional ballots, adding that “anything falling significantly outside of those percentages could reflect foul play.”
Accusations of voter fraud and disagreements over procedures for counting overseas and provisional ballots have been an issue in a number of 2018 midterm races, including the recounts of the gubernatorial and Senate races in Florida.