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Provides for state-funded, full manual recount in statewide elections

Sacramento – AB 44 by Speaker pro Tem Kevin Mullin was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown today. This bill will ensure that statewide recounts in California are fair and accessible for all voters and candidates by providing a state-funded, full manual recount option at the discretion of the Governor for any statewide office or ballot measure where the margin of victory is 0.015% or 1,000 votes, whichever is lower.

“I am extremely pleased that Governor Brown has signed this bill,” said Mullin. “California’s recount process is now more fair and transparent and doesn’t favor the candidate with the most money to spend on a recount.”

The recount system that was in place during the 2014 State Controller's race exposed serious flaws; allowing the funder of the recount to demand recounts in counties/precincts of their choice. If they made up the vote difference in those counties, the entire outcome of the election changed. Likewise, their opponent could respond with their own recount, using the same “cherry-picking” tactics to recover lost votes. This inefficient back and forth could continue until every vote was counted or until a candidate ran out of money, prompting Mullin to take action.

“This bill brings California’s election recount process into the 21st century,” Mullin said. “Elections are a fundamental democratic principle and we must make every effort to ensure their integrity. I believe AB 44, will do just that.”

Kevin Mullin represents the 22nd Assembly District and is the Speaker pro Tempore of the California State Assembly. He chairs the Select Committee on Biotechnology and serves on the following committees:  Budget, Budget Subcommittee #4 on State Administration, Business and Professions, Elections and Redistricting, Housing and Community Development and Revenue and Taxation. The 22nd district includes the cities of Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Foster City, Hillsborough, Millbrae, Pacifica, Redwood City, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Mateo, portions of South San Francisco and the San Mateo County Coastside communities of Montara and Moss Beach.

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