OZARK -- Republican state House candidate Jody Harris filed a lawsuit Tuesday disputing certified primary results that show her losing to Chad Puryear by seven votes.
The race in House District 25 took place in three counties: Crawford, Franklin and Washington. The lawsuit disputes the count by the Crawford County Election Commission, but was filed in Franklin County, citing Arkansas Code 7-5-801(b). The law says an election contest of a district office may be brought in any county in the district.
Certified results in all three counties together show Puryear winning 2,211 votes to Harris' 2,204.
The suit disputes the counting of absentee ballots in Crawford County. By law, the suit contends, absentee ballots should have been counted first, but were not counted until other results were in, were not counted until a pro-Harris poll watcher demanded it and were mishandled when they were counted. Those absentee ballots made the difference in the race, the suit contends.
The suit asks the court to void the House 25 race results but does not seek specific relief beyond what. A message was left at the Secretary of State's office asking what would happen if a primary's result was declared void.
To see a copy of the lawsuit, visit: nwaonline.com/614lawsuit/