In the controversial 46th Assembly District primary race between Democrats Mathylde Frontus and Ethan Lustig-Elgrably both parties are still without a winner after the Board of Elections (BOE) failed to reveal 9 percent of the unaccounted votes.
The unofficial election results showed Frontus with a narrow 70 vote lead with 3,060 votes, or 40.68 percent, against Lustin-Elgarbly’s 2,990 votes, or 39.75 percent. The district includes Coney Island, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and a portion of Brighton Beach.
In a conversation between the Board of Elections and Joey Herrera, Frontus campaign manager, the BOE told them, “Specific polling locations had not reported their numbers and it wasn’t totally uncommon or unusual for that to happen.” The BOE did state that the unofficial numbers will be put out in 3-5 days.
Among the polling sites where no numbers came in included at PS 90, 2840 west 12th Street and PS 188, 3314 Neptune Avenue. Additionally, the poll at Warbasse Building 1c, 2829 Ocean Parkway and PS 264, 371 89th Street in Bay Ridge only had partial returns.
Despite not getting any news from the BOE, Frontus was in high spirits and thanked her supporters on a Facebook post.
“Thank you to every single person who took time to vote for me. I view each and every vote as a sacred responsibility to do right by the people who are putting their trust in me,” said Frontus. “Please know that I do not take your vote lightly. As of this post, the votes are still not tallied so we are waiting on the results. I would like to thank everyone who took their time to work on our campaign today. We looked good and we worked hard. It was a beautiful display of the unity to be found across AD 46, with our supports pitching in across Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and Coney Island. Thank you, everyone.”
Frontus also held a rally in front of her campaign headquarters on Mermaid Avenue Saturday, in which several dozen people attended, many with anger at Democratic District Leaders Mark Treyger and Delia Schack for both not attending the rally and for running what they called a “very questionable election.”
Several at the rally called for a federal or other kind of monitor, particularly in the Coney Island area for what they saw as questionable problems in the polls. This included Spanish and Russian speaking interpreters actually going in the voting booths with voters and longtime registered Democrats who suddenly weren’t registered as Democrats and allegations of vote tampering.
Frontus, though, refused to blame anyone, instead saying she just wants to see fair results and she will always remain a community activist.
Treyger, who is also a city council member, and who publicly supported his former chief-of-staff, Lustig-Elgrably, gave a comment via email about the unaccounted votes, “I’m told [it was] errors with thumb-drives. This sounds like tech malfunctions. I’m told machines were returned to the BOE for analysis and we will learn more this week plus counting of absentee ballots.”
In a press release issued on Saturday afternoon, Lustig-Elgrably called on the BOE to release the final results, “As we are now days past Election Day and we still do not know the full vote count in several parts of the district, the Board of Elections must release the complete results in this race immediately and give an explanation for the cause of this delay,” said Lustig-Elgrably.
“I am grateful to every single voter who took the time to make their voice heard on Thursday, they deserve better than incompetence and excuses from the Board of Elections. To further delay the results would undermine the trust of the public in the entire electoral process. New Yorkers are owned clean and transparent elections.”
KCP was unable to get in touch with the BOE well into Friday afternoon to get a comment in regards to the election issue.
Photographs by Tsubasa Berg