By Pat Warren

BALTIMORE (WJZ) —  It’s long, it’s tedious, but as the candidates agree- necessary.

In the Democratic primary for Baltimore County Executive only nine votes separate Johnny Olszewski and Jim Brochin.

The recount at the Baltimore County Board of Elections got underway around 9 a.m. Thursday  morning with the Board Chairman swearing in those who will be counting the votes.

About 120 people are crammed into a storeroom the size of a basketball court.

Every one of the 85,000 votes cast in Baltimore County will be looked at by, and the result confirmed by at least 5 people. There are 18 work stations and behind each table stands a representative from the Olszewski and and Brochin campaigns.

Ten years ago the General Assembly decided it would be a good idea to back up voting machines with paper ballots- and today those paper ballots come into play. This recount was requested by state senator Jim Brochin after results showed him losing by just nine votes.

“I appreciate what the Baltimore County Board of Elections is doing. I know for all of them who work there this isn’t easy or fun for anybody but nine votes- we have to be certain and I appreciate the public’s indulgence in this exercise of democracy.” Bochin said Wednesday.

“We’re watching Democracy in action. We made sure every vote was counted in the first count and now we’re doing it again. We were really excited to win the initial count by 9 votes, Senator Brochin petitioned for a recount and we’re going through the process for what looks like a week or so.” Tucker Cavanaugh, Olszewski’s campaign manager said.

Tim Hodge, attorney for Brochin’s campaign said everyone is cordial.

“Both candidates have handled this incredibly professionally, the staff for each  campaigns have handled this professionally, and the attorneys have handled this professionally, and we know each other anyway. We’re just here to make sure the count is right and the count will be what the count will be.” Hodge said.

The recount is expected to continue each day until around five in the evening and will conclude next Monday or Tuesday.

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