Recount battle moves to Tuscaloosa County

The battle over a recount in the disputed race for governor has shifted to Tuscaloosa County after the Russell County sheriff stopped his county from becoming the first to review the ballots.

Election officials in Tuscaloosa County have approved conducting a recount, but have not set a time to begin. Supporters of Governor Don Siegelman have petitioned for a recount in every county in hopes of erasing Republican Bob Riley's lead of three-thousand-117 votes.

Russell County Probate Judge Albert Howard, a Democrat, had machines ready to begin the count Thursday morning. But Democratic Sheriff Tommy Boswell, who's responsible for protecting the ballots, said he was going to follow Republican Attorney General Bill Pryor's advice not to unseal the ballots for Siegelman's requested recount. Circuit Clerk Kathy Coulter also sided with Boswell. Howard and the county's Democratic Party chairman have asked a judge to decide if a recount for the county is legal. Russell County Circuit Judge Albert Johnson plans a hearing November 22nd.