A state Supreme Court judge Friday ordered all ballots impounded from Tuesday's election between Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-New Hartford, and Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi, D-Utica, in the 22nd Congressional District, according to news reports from Syracuse.com.
Justice Patrick F. MacRae of Oneida County asked sheriff's deputies in the eight-county district to secure computer memory sticks from voting machines, paper ballots, absentee ballots, affidavit ballots and related election records.
There is believed to be more than 17,000 absentee ballots yet to be counted.
Brindisi's campaign lawyers requested the court order because absentee and affidavit ballots — still sealed in envelopes — will likely decide the election as they are opened and counted over the next two weeks.
"From the very beginning, our campaign has maintained that we want every vote to be counted and every voter in the 22nd District to have their voice heard," said Ellen Foster, Brindisi's campaign manager.
Impoundment orders are often issued in close elections, but Tenney's campaign accused Brindisi of seeking the order to interfere with the counting of absentee and affidavit, or provisional, ballots.
As of Friday, Brindisi, a Utica Democrat, holds a lead of 1,293 votes over Tenney.
Brindisi's lead narrowed from more than 1,400 votes on Tuesday night after Broome County reported that results had not been counted from one voting machine in the town of Barker.