With all of the more than 2.2 million votes now counted in the Virginia Attorney General’s race, Democratic state Sen. Mark Herring has pulled ahead of Republican state Sen. Mark Obenshain by a razor-thin margin of 106 votes.
It ends at least the first round of vote-counting in the race, which has swung back and forth between the two candidates since Election Day last Tuesday.
Here’s a look, from the Virginia Board of Elections, at the totals as of 9:20 a.m. ET Wednesday morning:
Herring widened his lead from what was just 17 votes on Tuesday morning. It came as the Fairfax County Electoral Board finished reviewing provisional ballots, which are cast when a voter’s eligibility is in question. According to The Washington Post, that expands Herring’s lead further, to 163 votes. Officials accepted 271 of the 493 provisional ballots cast — Herring picked up 160 votes to Obenshain’s 103.
On Tuesday night, Herring and Democrats declared victory, even though a recount seems likely.
“Voters in Virginia have spoken, their voices have been heard and I am honored to have won their votes and their trust to become Virginia’s next Attorney General,” Herring said in a statement.
“Over the course of the past week, a thorough and extensive process has ensured that every vote has been tallied and accounted for. The margin was close, but it is clear that Virginians have chosen me to serve as the next Attorney General.”
The Democratic National Committee also paraded around the Democratic “sweep” in what was until recently a red state. Republicans have held the AG position for the past 20 years. Taking the post back would mean Democrats in all five statewide offices in Virginia, including its two U.S. Senate seats, for the first time since 1970.
In his own statement, Obenshain made no mention of conceding and hinted of “further announcements in the days ahead.”
“We owe it to the people of Virginia to make sure we get it right, and that every legitimate vote is counted and subject to uniform rules,” he said.
The State Board of Elections has until Nov. 25 to certify the results. If the final margin is within 1%, a recount can be requested.
The race has experienced a number of swings already — including at least three in the first 24 hours after Election Night. Obenshain quickly saw his lead — which was once at 1,200 — shrink considerably as provisional ballots were counted. Herring gained a 17-vote lead when it was revealed that the votes from one machine in heavily Democratic Richmond had not been tallied.
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