Victory slips from Hoffman's grasp again -- blame ACORN!

It's still possible the conservative could challenge the results of a special election, but for now, he's lost

Published November 19, 2009 11:45PM (EST)

Quick! Someone look for ACORN operatives; check around every corner, under every cushion, down every alley -- they must be somewhere, because Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman now has no chance of winning the special Congressional election held in upstate New York earlier this month without a recount.

Late Wednesday, Hoffman retracted his concession, charging ACORN and other nefarious actors with having stolen the election from him. He'd gotten a glimmer of hope because of corrected vote totals that showed Democrat Bill Owens with a smaller margin of victory than was originally reported, and because absentee ballots hadn't yet been counted.

But Hoffman's chances of prevailing, even after the new numbers were in, were always slim. And on Thursday, victory for the conservative favorite officially became mathematically impossible: With 3,072 absentee ballots remaining uncounted, Owens led by 3,105 votes.

Hoffman's campaign hasn't ruled out the idea of challenging the results, though even his spokesman has always sounded skeptical about the idea of a comeback win.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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