Davis contesting Morristown election defeat in court; questions votes by Seeing Eye president and other blind voters

Councilwoman Alison Deeb defeated Democratic challenger Justin Davis by 8 votes. Davis seeks a recount.
Councilwoman Alison Deeb defeated Democratic challenger Justin Davis by 8 votes. Davis seeks a recount.
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Councilwoman Alison Deeb defeated Democratic challenger Justin Davis by 8 votes. Davis seeks a recount.
Democratic challenger Justin Davis is suing to overturn his 8-vote loss to Councilwoman Alison Deeb, a Republican. A recount upheld Deeb’s victory last month.

By Kevin Coughlin

Justin Davis, who lost by 8 votes to Morristown Councilwoman Alison Deeb last month, is suing to overturn the election.

The Democratic candidate is challenging the validity of 18 ballots — including votes by the the president of The Seeing Eye Inc. — and is asking that those votes either be discarded–making him the winner–or that a new election be held in the town’s Fourth Ward.

Davis names Deeb; Morris County Clerk Ann Grossi; Deputy Superintendent of Elections Dale Kramer; and the county Board of Elections and its chairman, George Hanley, as respondents in his lawsuit.

Superior Court Assignment Judge Stuart Minkowitz is scheduled to hear the matter in Morristown on Monday.

A Nov. 23, 2015, recount upheld Deeb’s Nov. 3 victory.

But Davis, who raised three times as much money as his opponent, is questioning votes by blind voters, and residents of seniors housing, among others.

He is challenging signatures on mail-in ballots from Jim Kutsch, president and CEO of The Seeing Eye Inc., and his wife, Ginger, who both are blind.

The Kutsches could not immediately be reached for comment.

Davis also is questioning the Rhode Island postmark on a mail-in ballot from a resident attending school in Massachusetts, and is questioning voting assistance provided to at least five residents from seniors housing.

The lawsuit also cites a one-vote discrepancy on a voting machine, and asks for tallying of two mail-in votes that were not counted.

Deeb said she was “very surprised, and really shocked that [the election] being challenged in a court of law. I’ve been declared and certified the winner twice now. I’ve not done anything wrong,” said Deeb.

“He is trying to disenfranchise voters after the election has been certified. He is insinuating I have done something wrong, and I haven’t.”

Davis, who also seeks reimbursement of legal fees, did not respond to an email seeking comment.

Justin Davis and Alison Deeb  after November 2015 recount affirmed Deeb’s council victory. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
Justin Davis and Alison Deeb after November 2015 recount affirmed Deeb’s council victory. Photo by Kevin Coughlin
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3 COMMENTS

  1. I can’t help but laugh that the absentee ballot my son mailed (postmaked from Rhode Island) is being challenged. I was proud that my son, a first-time voter, took the time to vote by absentee ballot from college and now he is being challenged. I am not impressed with Justin Davis (and I wasn’t before this began) and hopefully, he won’t be representing the residents of the Fourth Ward!

  2. History repeats itself. I have seen this very same situation before. What an insult to the voters, as well our more than capable Morris County election board officials.

  3. no, he is questioning the process, not YOU Ms Deeb…….I would too, based on what I have heard and read.

    Paul

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