Harden appears Senate winner

By David Irvin: CNJ staff writer

Clint Harden will return to the state Senate next month, according to county clerks who participated in a recount of votes involving the Republican incumbent from Clovis and Robert Frost, D-San Jon.

State officials said Thursday they’ve not received official results, but the clerks said Harden’s 36-vote lead prior to the recount will stand.

Frost asked for the partial recount for the Senate District 7 seat; his request covered only 11 precincts, in Taos, Union and Colfax counties.

Secretary of State officials said recounts in Taos and Union counties were unchanged. Colfax County Clerk Barbara Castillo said her office’s recount found one additional vote for both candidates.

Following the official state canvassing, Harden led with 9,010 votes to Frost’s 8,974, according to numbers provided by the Secretary of State’s office.

Harden said Thursday he is pleased the recount is over, but he understood the importance of a recount option to the Democratic process.

“That’s what this whole process is about, you know, checks and balances … ” he said.

Frost said he would not officially concede until after he spoke with the Secretary of State’s office today, but said, “I think they must have counted it pretty good the first time.”

Frost said he wasn’t aware of any additional avenues he could pursue to further examine the election results; he said he does not wish to prolong the process anymore.

Harden owns and operates Twin Cronnie restaurant in Clovis.

CNJ News Editor Mike Linn contributed to this report.