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RALEIGH, NC (WECT) – It appears that the final political race in southeastern North Carolina is over, except for official certification.
Challenger David Rouzer called Rep. Mike McIntyre Wednesday night to concede the race in the Seventh Congressional District. Final numbers from Wednesday's recount in Duplin County show Rep. McIntyre as the unofficial winner. Results posted on the Duplin County Board of Elections website show Rouzer picked up nine votes in county. Adding results from recounts in the other eleven counties in the district, and posted on the NC Board of Elections website, would put McIntyre's margin at 654 votes. In the twelve-county recount, Rouzer gained one vote over McIntyre, who went in with a lead of 655 votes out of more than 336,000 in his bid to win a ninth term in Congress.
"I am very grateful to have the honor of serving the citizens of Eastern North Carolina," McIntyre said in an e-mail statement. "My commitment has always been to serve the people back home. I have always sought to bring people together - Democrats, Republicans, and Independents - to do what's best for our area. We have many challenges facing our great nation, and I will continue to seek bi-partisan solutions to help create jobs, protect Social Security and Medicare, help our small businesses, farmers, veterans, coastal communities, and always keep our nation safe and strong, and continue my very strong commitment to education."
Here is the rest of McIntyre's statement:
"I deeply appreciate the love and support of my wife and family, the work of our campaign team, and the hundreds of volunteers who gave so much dedication and determination to help lead us to victory. They poured their hearts into this effort and always kept a positive attitude about achieving victory.
"I am very grateful for the many friends and supporters who gave of their time, talents, and treasure - and especially their prayers - that sustained our family along this long and tough campaign road. This was a total team victory, and every single person involved played an important role for which my family and I are forever grateful. Our door for public service to help all of Eastern North Carolina will be open to serve, and we will help in any way that we can."
"I thank Senator Rouzer for his commitment and dedication to public service, and I wish him well in his future endeavors."
David Rouzer released the following statement:
"Now that the recount has been completed and the tally of votes is official, we can move forward satisfied that each vote was counted properly and accurately. I have called Congressman McIntyre to congratulate him on a hard-fought victory, and I wish him well as he joins a new Congress that will be dealing with very difficult issues facing our country.
During the past two weeks, I have been humbled by the outpouring of support from friends, volunteers and supporters around the district and throughout the state. To all of those who have encouraged me to run again in 2014, your sincerity means a lot. With the Christmas Season upon us, I am setting any thoughts of my political future to the side, refocusing on growing my distributorship and consulting businesses while enjoying the farm and the holidays with family and friends.
Finally, to the citizens of Johnston and Wayne County who provided me the privilege and honor to represent them in the North Carolina Senate the past four years, thank you. We have achieved a lot and our work for the betterment of this state and country will continue."
Elections officials in Johnston County found no change in McIntyre's vote total in their recount, but Rouzer lost seven votes from the previous total. Rouzer also lost seven votes in the recount in New Hanover County, while McIntyre picked up two. Rouzer picked up seven votes in Robeson County, where he added one vote to his total and McIntyre lost six. In Hoke County, McIntyre lost one vote and Rouzer had no change. Rouzer picked up three votes each in recounts in Columbus and Sampson counties.
The recount in Lenoir County added five votes to Rouzer's total, putting his count at 7,629. McIntyre, the incumbent running for re-election, gained eight votes to finish at 4,689. Officials in Bladen County say McIntyre gained two votes there, while Rouzer's total remained the same.
The recount in Brunswick County saw Rouzer pick up two votes from absentee mail-in ballots, while McIntyre picked up one vote from curbside balloting. Elections officials in Pender and Cumberland counties say recounts there did not change any of the vote totals.
Columbus County's recount finished with McIntyre losing one vote and Rouzer gaining two.
Rouzer's campaign called for the runoff after he finished 655 votes behind McIntyre in the vote caucus.
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