Soares holds lead in DA race with at least 60% of ballots left to count

David Soares

David Soares

ALBANY COUNTY — David Soares, the four-term incumbent Albany County District Attorney, has so far turned back a progressive primary challenge from one of his former employees; however well over half of ballots have yet to be counted. 

In Tuesday’s Democratic primary, unofficial results show Soares received 7,218 votes to challenger Matthew Toporowski’s 6,077 votes — numbers that include in-person and early voting but none of the 28,502 absentee ballots issued by the county. 

Both Soares and Toporowski told The Enterprise on Wednesday that they are confident of a primary win. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, residents were allowed to vote by mail this election. 

Albany County Board of Elections Democratic Commissioner Matthew Clyne said as of Tuesday, 17,534 absentee ballots had been mailed back to the county, and added that another estimated 2,000 ballots had come in Wednesday morning. 

The cutoff date for the board of elections to receive ballots is seven calendar days from Tuesday’s primary, June 30; state law says the ballots can’t be counted until eight days after a primary election.

The early-voting ballots went his way, Soares said, as did Tuesday’s in-person vote. “And so, we anticipate that the [absentee] ballots are going to follow suit,” Soares told The Enterprise on Wednesday. “So we’re confident in our position, but we’ll have to wait until every last vote is counted.”

Toporowski told The Enterprise, “We’re still feeling very confident, the amount of [absentee] ballots out there is 28,000, so there’s only actually 17,000 ballots counted so far.”

He thinks that that 1,100-vote deficit can be made up, and said that his campaign has examined absentee balloting in other races, “[which] some people say it favors the incumbent, but what we’ve seen recently, in light of the political climate that we’re in … A lot of times in other races we’ve looked at that, these absentees have actually favored the challenger. So we’re still confident.”

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