Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Virginia Election Wrap-Up: Perriello, Nye, Obama's Margin

There are still a few loose ends in Virginia:

First, and foremost, it looks like the 5th Congressional District race between Democratic challenger Tom Perriello (pictured here) and GOP incumbent Virgil Goode won't be decided until the Va. Board of Elections certifies final results in a few days, and then a recount is bound to follow.

As of this writing, Goode leads by 300 votes, with one precinct yet to report. That precinct is the Plymouth Precinct in Lunenberg County, a county that is pretty evenly divided between the two candidates. In addition, throughout the day, the VBE will be updating election results as each county certifies its results, so the numbers will change a bit--indeed, when we ate breakfast, Perriello was ahead, but now Goode is ahead. We've seen this before in close Va. elections, and this one will definitely go down to the wire. To keep up with the changes, check out the VBE website HERE.

[Update: 3:40 pm--it's been back and forth all day as counties certify and update their results. Right now, Perriello has a razor-thn lead of 25 votes with all precincts in. We won't know the final result in this one for a couple weeks.]

We hope Perriello wins, but regardless he ran a terrific campaign.

Second, congratulations go to Democratic challenger Glenn Nye, who defeated Republican incumbent Thelma Drake in the 2d district. Clearly, Obama's coattails were a big help there.
We might add that Judy Feder failed miserably in her rematch against Frank Wolf after running what we thought was a pretty poor campaign.

Finally, there is the question of Obama's final margin in Virginia. Oh, you'd think that with 99% of the precincts reporting, Obama's current margin--4.5%--won't really change. But you'd be wrong. Not all precincts are created equal.

While only 26 precincts haven't reported yet, they include the absentee ballots from Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Prince William County, Newport News City, Norfolk City and Portsmouth City, all large jurisdictions that went for Obama. [VBE data HERE]

We think there are between 80,000-100,000 absentee ballots in Fairfax County alone.

So, we believe Obama's final margin will be above 5% and maybe close to 6%.

We'll have an additional word on Virginia absentee voting and turnout in a separate post shortly.

1 comment:

Polly said...

Another point of view: Election results: Obama wins!