More than twenty-four hours after the polls closed on Tuesday, the race for the Republican nomination for mayor of Philadelphia remains too close to call.
With results from seventeen precincts still to be counted, Karen Brown, a former Democratic committeewoman before being recruited by Republican leaders to head their party’s ticket, leads Center City realtor and nationally-renowned privacy expert John Featherman by a scant 53 votes.
With 98.9 percent of the city’s 1,687 precincts reporting, Brown had 8,259 votes to Featherman’s 8,206. The incomplete numbers are largely due to the fact that cartridges used in 65 polling places across the city still had not been returned to the City Commission as of Wednesday afternoon.
City election officials have said that the Republican mayoral nomination probably won’t be resolved until next week, once all of the absentee and provisional ballots are tabulated.
There were 1,675 absentee and alternative ballots cast citywide, but it’s unclear how many of those were cast by Republicans.
While Brown and Featherman both nervously await the final outcome, one of them already believes that his campaign has been a success.
“Whether I win or not, this is a stunning defeat of their machine,” said Featherman, referring to Philadelphia GOP chairman Vito Canuso and Michael Meehan, the party’s general counsel. “Their machine is useless.”