Rep. West refuses to concede election

Nov. 12, 2012 at 3:58 PM

FORT PIERCE, Fla., Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Rep. Allen West, R-Fla., thanked supporters but refused to concede defeat in his contested congressional race, despite certification of his opponent's victory.

The state of Florida certified Democrat Patrick Murphy as the winner Saturday, following a recount of early ballots in Florida's 22nd Congressional District that put Murphy far enough ahead to avoid another automatic recount, the Washington newspaper The Hill reported Monday.

St. Lucie County, Fla., officials agreed to recount three days of early ballots out of concern for voting machine irregularities reported on those days, but West's campaign has asked that all eight days of early ballots be counted, the newspaper said.

Following the recount Sunday, the county announced West still trailed Murphy, the Scripps Howard Treasure Coast Newspapers said.

West, a Tea Party favorite, thanked his supporters on his Facebook page, referring to them as "guardians of America's honor" in "a fight to preserve and protect the American democratic electoral process."

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