Mr. Elias said the difference between the votes for Senate and governor in the county was significant, but he refrained from criticizing the ballot layout, at least for now.
Once counties report their unofficial totals to the state on Saturday, Secretary of State Ken Detzner, an appointee of Mr. Scott, will be able to order any of the legally mandated recounts.
A statewide machine recount would have to be completed by 3 p.m. on Nov. 15, Mr. Elias said. If that process yields a margin of less than 0.25 percentage points in any federal or state races, then Mr. Detzner would order manual recounts in those races of what are known as undervotes and overvotes; the recounts would have to be completed by Nov. 18.
In the Senate race, undervotes are ballots on which optical-scanning machines detected a vote for another race down the ballot, like governor or attorney general, but no selection for Senate. Overvotes are ballots on which scanners detected that the voter had marked more than one choice in the race.
Florida voters fill in paper ballots by hand using a pen, and no longer cast the punch-card ballots that produced the infamous “hanging chads” in the 2000 presidential election.
Candidates cannot request recounts, but those with fewer votes in a race can refuse them.
State Democrats dispatched lawyers to county canvassing boards and sent volunteers to campaign offices to track the counting of provisional ballots. Mr. Gillum addressed supporters on Facebook on Thursday afternoon.
“In spite of the fact that we’re a little bit down in the numbers, we’re hopeful that every single vote will be counted in this race,” he said. “That way, all of us can walk away extremely confident about what each and every one of us did.”
Mr. DeSantis, for his part, has already announced his transition team.
“I’m proud to have been elected on Tuesday night,” he said in a brief statement to reporters after an event in Hialeah Gardens, Fla. “We’ll let the lawyers do what they’ve got to do. But we’re good, and I’m looking forward to serving.”