Recanvass in Kentucky Confirms Clinton Win Over Sanders

Image: Democratic Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders Holds Campaign Rally In Bay Area
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks at a campaign rally at Waterfront Park on May 18, 2016 in Vallejo, California. A day after winning the Oregon primary, Bernie Sanders is campaigning in California ahead of the state's presidential primary on June 7. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

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By Carrie Dann

A recanvass of Democratic primary results in Kentucky confirmed that Clinton won the May 17 contest over Bernie Sanders, the Kentucky secretary of state said on Thursday.

Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Grimes announced that there were "the recanvass results did not alter the outcome of the election."

Sanders requested the recanvass on Tuesday. The recanvass involved a retabulation of the votes as they were originally counted, not a full recount, which would have required examination of ballots and voting machines.

In a statement, Sanders said he "accepts" the results of the recanvass.

"We accept the results in Kentucky. We are very pleased that we split the delegates in a state with a closed primary in which independents cannot vote and where Secretary Clinton defeated Barack Obama by 35 points in 2008," he said in a statement.

Results after primary night showed Clinton barely leading the contest, with 212,550 votes compared to Sanders' 210,626 votes, or a margin of 1,924 votes.

NBC News declared Clinton the "apparent winner" of the contest last week. Grimes, a Clinton supporter, also named Clinton the winner of the primary last week.

Grimes said Thursday that the unofficial results of the canvassing now show a margin of 1,911 votes for Clinton.

Grimes' office said the 13-vote discrepancy was the result of "provisional votes and a discrepancy in absentee ballot totals in two counties."

A change in the winner of the Kentucky contest may have given Sanders a small boost in terms of political momentum, but the stakes for the actual Democratic delegate count were small.

Because the state allocates its delegates proportionally, Sanders would have picked up a single delegate at most if he had been declared the winner by a small margin.