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Weldon Montague 3d

517 new ballots in Orange, where one-vote separates two candidates

As many as five candidates could still be in race

By David Wildstein, May 14 2020 7:04 pm

More than 300 new vote-by-mail ballots were delivered from Orange today, bring the new two-day total to 517 in a race where just one vote separates to candidates.

In the race for the third at-large council seat, Weldon Montague leads former Councilman Edward Marable, 577 to 576.  A third candidate, Planning Board Chairman Dwight Holmes, is just 31 behind Montague.

Coram J. Rimes, Jr., who is currently in fifth place with 495 votes, trails Montague by 82 votes, and Antoinette Hall, in sixth place with 486 votes, is theoretically 91 votes away from the lead.

Another 209 votes came in from Orange on Tuesday and 308 today.

As of Tuesday, Orange had returned 3,073 votes, of which 2,676 were counted and 397 were rejected or not counted.  The Wednesday votes brought the total number to 3,282.

Adrienne Wooten (1,053) and Clifford Ross (941) won the other two at-large.

Mayor Dwayne Warren won a landslide re-election, winning 58% of the vote in a six-candidate field.  The second-place finisher, Donna K. Williams, received 18%.

The Essex County Board of Elections was set to certify results this evening, but postponed their meeting until tomorrow in order to process the large number of VBM ballots across the county.

State law sets close of business today as the deadline for ballots to come in, as long as they are postmarked by 8 PM on May 12.

It’s not immediately clear how many of the ballots that arrived today were mailed after the deadline.

There have been multiple reports of ballots taking a week or more to be delivered by the U.S. Postal Service.

The Board of Elections will not count any ballots that come in after today, and it would be up to a candidate to challenge the certification of the election.

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