Maloy declares victory, Jenkins can call for recount in congressional primary

Jul 9, 2024, 9:46 PM | Updated: 9:49 pm

Utah's 2nd Congressional District debate between Colby Jenkins and Congresswoman Celeste Maloy at t...

Utah's 2nd Congressional District debate between Colby Jenkins and Congresswoman Celeste Maloy at the KUED studios at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City on Monday, June 10, 2024. (Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News)

(Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Rep. Celeste Maloy holds a narrow 214-vote lead over challenger Colby Jenkins in the 2nd Congressional District Republican primary, though Jenkins moved within range to qualify for a recount as counties completed their canvasses Tuesday evening.

The margin is down from the 314-vote lead Maloy held Monday morning, as late incoming ballots from Washington County continue to break heavily for Jenkins.

Maloy declared victory in a call with reporters, recounting a busy several months of campaigning for reelection immediately upon being sworn in last November.

“Two-hundred and fourteen votes is pretty close, but it’s about 213 votes more than you need to win, so I’m grateful for that,” she said, speaking with reporters on a video call from Washington. “I’m glad to have some finality. I know we’re in potential recount territory, but I don’t anticipate that a recount will change the outcome.”

Jenkins’ campaign has previously hinted that it would pursue a recount if the margins were within the 0.25% required by state law, and his campaign manager, Greg Powers, on Monday said the campaign was also considering trying to contest the results in court if a recount wasn’t possible.

Powers told KSL.com Tuesday the campaign plans to pursue a recount but will have to wait until after the statewide canvass on July 22.

“I’ve been in a lot of battles in my life; victory isn’t something you declare,” Jenkins said in a statement. “You win it, or you don’t. Let Celeste declare victory, and we will win it.”

Maloy appeared unbothered at the prospect of a recount or other legal challenges to the results. Quoting her mother, she said: “I can’t control anybody else. I can only control me.”

“I know what my next step is: I’m going to get up in the morning, go back to Capitol Hill and vote and represent the people in the 2nd District,” she continued. “That’s my job. It’s my job currently, and I think it’s going to be my job for the next two years.”

The election has already been subject to litigation after Jenkins’ campaign sued the Washington County clerk, seeking to compel him to turn over a list of voters whose ballots had issues that needed to be remedied. A judge ruled against Jenkins on Monday, saying that clerks have discretion when it comes to turning over so-called “cure lists.”

Jenkins and others have also expressed concern about several hundred mail-in ballots from Washington and Iron counties that were not counted because they were not postmarked in time. Mail from several southern Utah counties is routed through a facility in Las Vegas, so some ballots appear to have been postmarked days after they were mailed.

State election law prohibits mail-in ballots from being counted if they are postmarked later than the day before the election.

Iron County Commissioner Paul Cozzens on Friday said he wouldn’t vote to certify the election results because of the issue with the U.S. Postal Service. The county ultimately voted to certify the election Tuesday afternoon with Cozzens in dissent.

Powers said the Jenkins campaign is considering legal action beyond requesting a recount to adjudicate the several hundred ballots that were postmarked late.

“We would like to do that, whether it’s in the recount process, or if that requires a legal challenge,” he said, of trying to get the late ballots counted. “That’s going to be a big focus of ours, just making sure every vote is counted. And then win, lose or draw, we’ll accept whatever the results are.”

Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson, the state’s top election official, explained the process of a potential recount in a post on social media Tuesday evening. She said the losing candidate can request a recount after the statewide canvass on July 22. The candidate will have seven days to file for a recount following the canvass, and the recount “shall be conducted” within seven days after that, she said.

As part of the recount, county clerks will recount all ballots and reexamine all uncounted ballots. The recount will be audited, and county boards will canvass the results of the recount in their counties.

KSL 5 TV Live

Politics & Elections

Sen. Bob Menendez, pictured leaving Manhattan federal court on July 16, will resign his seat effect...

Laura Dolan, Lauren Fox and Clare Foran, CNN

Bob Menendez will resign his US Senate seat effective August 20

Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey will resign his seat effective August 20, according to a copy of his resignation letter obtained by CNN.

17 hours ago

A voter submits their ballot during primary election voting in Provo on June 25. Lt. Gov. Deidre He...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com

Lieutenant governor certifies results from Utah’s June primary elections

Utah Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson certified the statewide June 25 primary election Monday.

21 hours ago

U.S. President Joe Biden delivers a nationally televised address from the Oval Office of the White ...

Aamer Madhani

Biden will address the nation Wednesday on his decision to drop his 2024 Democratic reelection bid

President Joe Biden will address the nation from the Oval Office on Wednesday evening on his decision to drop his 2024 Democratic reelection bid.

22 hours ago

Kimberly Cheatle, Director, U.S. Secret Service, testifies during a House Committee on Oversight an...

Colleen Long

Secret Service director steps down after assassination attempt against ex-President Trump at rally

The director of the Secret Service is stepping down from her job following the assassination attempt against former President Donald Trump.

24 hours ago

(Harris delegates)...

Ethan Cohen, Molly English, Matt Holt and Sydney Topf, CNN

Harris secures enough delegate endorsements to clinch Democratic nomination

Kamala Harris has the support of enough Democratic delegates to win the party’s nomination for president, according to CNN’s delegate estimate.

1 day ago

Utah's democratic delegates will meet this week to talk about how they will pick the party's next n...

Shelby Lofton

Utah democratic delegates announce endorsement for Harris as path to naming a nominee changes

All of the Utah democratic delegates present at a meeting Monday voted in favor of endorsing Vice President Kamala Harris. 

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

young male technician is repairing a printer at office...

Les Olson

Unraveling the dilemma between leasing and buying office technology

Carefully weigh these pros and cons to make an informed decision that best suits your business growth and day-to-day operation. 

A kitchen in a modern farmhouse....

Lighting Design

A room-by-room lighting guide for your home

Bookmark this room-by-room lighting guide whenever you decide to upgrade your lighting or style a new home.

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Maloy declares victory, Jenkins can call for recount in congressional primary