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What Does The Race Uncertainty Mean For The Future?

By: Michael Gorsegner
By: Michael Gorsegner

November 28, 2005

With such a small amount of votes separating the two candidates, the question now arises 'What's next?' in this political process. One local political analyst tried to answer that question. The amount separating Bob McDonnell and Creigh Deeds is only 323 votes.

"Mr. McDonnell is the winner of that race," said Board of Elections Chairman Michael Brown.

With that, the State Board of Elections certified Bob McDonnell the winner of Virginia's Attorney's General race. But the battle has just begun.

"We don't know who won this race and so if you ask me, 'are we confident that we won?,' well of course not. Nobody can be confident," said Larry Framme with Virginia Victory 2005.

"As most people will tell you that have been through this, there is very little chance of it changing much anymore," said Randolph Beales with the McDonnell Transition Team.

Both camps have put together transition and legal team to forge forward. In a race separated by 1/100 of a percent, anything can happen.

"It's likely that going back and [re]counting the votes could produce a different result, although that chance is probably less now," said Matt Smyth.

Smyth with the Center for Politics said modern voting technology has decreased the chance for electoral uncertainty, even compared to the Florida Presidential problems in 2000.

"The back-and-forth swings that you had in the old days probably aren't as likely to happen, but it is possible," said Smyth.

While of course the Attorney General's seat is up for grabs, future political aspirations also hang in the balance. With only three elected positions in Virginia government, this office is often a stepping stone.

"When you talk about statewide name recognition, you are looking at Attorney's General and Lieutenant Governor's," Smyth said.

The Commonwealth does have precedence for the recount. The gubernatorial race in 1989 was separated by 7,000 votes. After the recount, it saw only a change of 113 votes.

If all goes well, this winner will be determined before inauguration day set for January 14.


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