Alameda City Councilman Tony Daysog must know how Virginia

Sen. George Allen feels.

The AC Transit board candidate has called for a recount after finishing 53 votes behind Elsa Ortiz for the seat in Ward 3, which includes Alameda, East Oakland and San Leandro. Evoking President Bush's controversial Florida recount, Daysog has demanded a "fact-finding mission" to determine how votes were counted.

With all precincts reporting, he had 20,009 votes to the 20,062 votes for Ortiz, an attorney who works for state Senate leader Don Perata.

"I am demanding a full explanation as to why it took so long to count ballots between 1:50 a.m. and 4 a.m.," Daysog said in a news release.

He also demanded lists of absentee and provisional voters.

"If there's something that Florida 2000 or Ohio 2004 (in which Bush won by a narrow margin with numerous complaints of election-day problems) taught us, it's that anything can happen in elections," Daysog said in a telephone interview, adding that "there's bound to be mistakes somewhere; human error, machine error. A recount would rectify that."

The complaint was met with a mix of emotions by those involved in the election, ranging from laughter to serious examinations of the way Alameda County counts its votes.

"We did not see anything that alarmed or concerned us in terms of anomalies," said Kate Quick of the city of Alameda League of Women Voters, who serves as an election observer appointed by Alameda County.

Ortiz said she was waiting for the final absentee votes to be counted to see if she had prevailed in the contest.

"There's still ballots to count, and unlike Mr. Daysog, I see no reason not to trust the process and respect the will of the voters," she said.