Judge Rejects Senate Candidate's Recount Attempt

AUGUST 23, 2006 - Posted at 7:56 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A state judge yesterday dismissed a recount attempt by a candidate for the Democratic Party's nomination to a state Senate seat who missed getting into a runoff by 370 votes.

Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Alice Gray dismissed a motion by Alvin Simes, who had claimed that election officials failed to count as many as 622 votes cast in the May 23 primary election.

Simes, of Helena-West Helena, filed his suit in Pulaski County under a state law requiring election challenges to be heard there.

Simes finished third in balloting in the District 16 race, behind Arnell Willis and Jack Crumbly.

Gray dismissed Simes' complaint because he did not include the secretary of state's office and the Democratic Party of Arkansas in the lawsuit.  Gray also dismissed Simes' request to amend the complaint to add the secretary of state and the state party to the lawsuit, saying he missed the deadline for filing an election challenge.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)