Hundreds of Votes Separate Obenshain, Herring

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FAIRFAX COUNTY (WRIC) – It's
been three days since the election and there's still no Attorney General. There are only hundreds of
votes separating the candidates.

Republican Mark Obenshain leads
by less than 800 votes over Democrat Mark Herring, but the Fairfax County
Electoral Board says the unofficial number of absentee ballots is off by about 2,000.
Now some political analysts say it could be well into next year before the state
officially has an attorney general.

The Fairfax County
Electoral Board says things aren't adding up in the county's eighth district. The
unofficial count of absentee ballots tallied in that district was 5,293, nearly
2,000 less than the number of absentees that were expected.

The Board's secretary says
it's clearly an error as officials spent the day canvassing absentee ballots.

The potentially missing
votes come from a district that is heavily democratic, and some believe could
be the difference in a razor thin race.

Political analyst Richard
Meagher says if the race gets even tighter, not only is a recount probable, but
the race could end up in court as both candidates fight to have some votes
counted, and others thrown out.

“So some
people are arguing that if these numbers hold up, the numbers that we think are
missing, and can be found, that that could be enough to put Mark Herring into
the lead,” he says. “Then whoever is the loser, whoever is below may try to
proceed further in the courts to bring up appeals to sort of further the
battle, if there's a chance of victory.”

A recount could take
weeks, and Meagher says a legal battle could take even longer.

“We could see extend out
into the next year when other members, other people are taking office.”

The State Board of
Elections sent a statement saying:

“Canvassing activities are
continuing today and fluctuations will occur as a part of this process. That is
normal and to be expected.”

They say more information
should be available on tuesday. 

Meanwhile both campaigns
are coming out saying in the end they believe their candidate will prevail.

 

Copyright 2013 by Young
Broadcasting of Richmond

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