Republican Mark Obenshain’s tenuous triple-digit lead in the Virginia attorney general race dwindled to just 55 votes, according to the latest count Sunday.
Democrat Mark Herring closed in after Fairfax County tabulated a batch of previously untallied absentee ballots from Democratic Rep. Jim Moran’s congressional district.
More results will be coming as electoral boards around the state complete their count of provisional ballots – votes cast by people who didn’t present legally permissible identification at the polls.
Initially, provisional voters had until noon Friday to appear before electoral boards to say why their ballots should count.
Fairfax — the Democrat-heavy county that is the state’s largest — extended its deadline for appeals until 1 p.m. Tuesday, after just over 20 people out of 493 provisional voters appeared, the Washington Post reported.
Once the statewide vote is certified on Nov. 25, a statewide recount will be conducted in December.
The AG contest is the Republican Party’s last hope to hold a statewide executive office, having lost the governorship and lieutenant governor’s office. Democrats occupy both U.S. Senate seats.
At midnight on election night, Obsenshain, a state senator from Harrisonburg, held a 7,000-vote lead. An hour later, his lead over fellow state Sen. Herring, D-Leesburg, had shrunk to 700.
In percenage terms, both candidates were tied at 49.88% Sunday. More than 2.21 million votes were cast in the race.
Cross-posted at Watchdog.org