Conservative Recount Alert! — Etheridge Asks for Recount

Dear Supporters,

Election night, after the ten counties in my district had reported their votes, I led Bob Etheridge by 2,100 votes. (That number is crucial because under North Carolina law Congressman Etheridge is not entitled to an ‘automatic recount’ if he trails by more than 1% – or 1,888 votes.)

Then, yesterday afternoon – unexpectedly – the vote totals changed. The State Board of Elections reported my lead had dropped to 1,600 votes. Two hours later Bob Etheridge announced he intended to call for a recount.

As a result, last night my campaign began hiring attorneys – eleven attorneys in all. One in each county to monitor each recount and an attorney to work with the North Carolina State Board of Elections.

Right now, our best estimate of the minimum cost we face is $50,000. But, of course, my campaign spent every penny we had before the election.

Yesterday, we appealed to the National Republican Congressional Committee for support, asking if they could contribute to help pay the costs of this recount. Their answer, unfortunately, was, No – that we would have to raise the money to pay for the recount ourselves.

I was afraid that would be their answer. Months ago, I went to Washington and asked the National Republican Congressional Committee and many conservative leaders to help my campaign. Many conservative groups – like the Susan B. Anthony List, Concerned Women of America, Freedom Works, and Sarah Palin’s Sarah PAC all helped, but the NRCC declined. Later, they did support other campaigns in North Carolina – which, unfortunately, lost – but we never received their support. In fact, their spokesman told the press “that the campaign wasn’t ready for prime time” – which actually made it even harder for us to raise money. So, I am doubtful we will get support from the NRCC to help with the expense of the recount.

Right now, I lead Bob Etheridge by 1,600 votes. That lead should hold up. But we can’t take anything for granted. We must leave no stone unturned to insure a fair recount. We cannot allow the kind of mishap that happened in Minnesota – when Al Franken was elected – to repeat itself in North Carolina.

This morning my campaign manager set up a special fund – Renee Ellmers for Congress Recount Fund – to pay for the recount. I never dreamed I’d be asking you for another donation two days after the election – but I need to raise $50,000 ‘yesterday.’ The maximum you may give is $2,400. Each contribution – whatever the amount, whether it’s $25, $250, or $500 – is crucial and will be deeply appreciated. Could you send a donation and mail it today? Or, better still, click here, to give on my website.

I apologize for asking for another gift so soon – but I am sure you understand.

As ever, thank you and best wishes.

Renee Ellmers