In just a few days, the Franklin County Board of Elections will certify the final vote totals for the 12th Congressional District Special Election and a winner will be named.
That is if the total vote difference isn’t one half of one percent; if that’s the case and automatic recount is conducted.
Monday, two of the seven counties finalized their total vote counts and sent them to Franklin County.
In Delaware County, Republican candidate Troy Balderson picked up and additional 826 votes from absentee and provisional ballots, while Democrat Danny O’Connor added 674 votes.
Muskingum County, home to Troy Balderson, turned in their final numbers as well with the Republican picking up 95 more votes than the Democrat.
The votes from Delaware and Muskingum County extended Balderson’s lead over O’Connor to 1,781 votes.
Despite the setback, O’Connor’s camp remains positive.
“You know, we feel really great,” said Annie Ellison O’Connor’s campaign manager. “We just want to make sure that everybody’s voice is counted and everybody’s voice is heard and that means we don’t find out until Friday.”
Franklin and Licking Counties are expected to certify their results on Friday, with Richland, Morrow, and Marion Counties finalizing their counts in the days before.
Mathematically, it is almost impossible for O’Connor to win this election, but the fact that it is this close is a victory for the Democrat who will now be able to refocus efforts toward winning the election this November.
Because this was a special election only meant to fill the seat until the end of the year, the same two candidates will now have to wage another campaign to get their voters to the polls again this fall when the mid-term, or Gubernatorial Election will be held.
Monday’s results increased the State Republican Party’s exuberance in Balderson’s showing and resulted in a prediction from communication director Blaine Kelly.
“We’re gonna have more people show up on November 6th and Troy Balderson will win the 12th Congressional District by a wider margin,” said Kelly.
Still, people showing up could work to the Democrats advantage as they now have nearly two months to work on undecided voters.
“Between now and November it means we get to talk to more people and that’s a good thing for us,” said Ellison.
Whoever wins the election in November will serve as the district’s representative in Washington D.C. for the next two years.