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updated: 3/24/2014 6:06 PM

Kane judge race 'not over' as absentee ballots come in

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  • Marmarie Kostelny, left, and DJ Tegeler, right, are separated by 10 votes in the GOP primary race for Kane County 16th Circuit Judge.

      Marmarie Kostelny, left, and DJ Tegeler, right, are separated by 10 votes in the GOP primary race for Kane County 16th Circuit Judge.

 
 

A close race for a 16th Judicial Circuit judge seat has become even closer absentee and other ballots have arrived in Kane County.

Geneva attorney D.J. Tegeler's 26-vote lead has shrunk to 10 over Judge Marmarie Kostelny for the GOP nomination, according to unofficial results.

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As of Monday, Tegeler had 6,213 votes and Kostelny had 6,203.

Neither side has conceded as 45 possible absentee, military, provisional and grace period ballots still must be counted by April 1.

"This is a great civics lesson if nothing else," Tegeler said. "Do you say every vote counts? No kidding."

Unofficial totals from March 18 showed Tegeler with a lead, but it has shrunk as absentee ballots have come in to Kane County.

Tegeler said he has not claimed victory and Kostelny has not conceded.

"When it's that close, you have to count all the ballots and see what they are," he said.

Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham said his office has been counting absentee ballots as they arrive and as of Monday, there are 34 Republican absentee ballots still outstanding for the race.

Cunningham also said vote totals were updated last Wednesday morning as his office ran a different election tallying report through its computers.

Linda Fechner, executive director of the Aurora Election Commission, said her office has received 10 votes from absentee, military, provisional or grace period ballots so far. Those votes, along with one more possible absentee ballot, will be cast and counted on April 1, she said.

Cunningham said the loser in the race may ask for a "discovery recount" of 25 percent of precincts.

The winner gets the Republican nomination for a circuit judge seat and advances to the Nov. 4 general election. No Democrat is running for the seat.

Kostelny could not be reached for comment Monday.

Tegeler said the two spoke Monday and congratulated each other for a good race.

"I want to thank my supporters," Tegeler said. "Judge Kostelny ran a good, clean campaign. We'll see where the votes are at (April 1). It's not over yet."

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