Cuccinelli Keeps Va. Senate Seat In Recount

Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, December 20, 2007; Page B01

Democrat Janet S. Oleszek conceded defeat yesterday in her bid to unseat state Sen. Ken Cuccinelli II (R-Fairfax) after a recount of the Nov. 6 election found she lost by 101 votes.

Oleszek had trailed Cuccinelli by a quarter of a percentage point after the election, allowing her to request a taxpayer-funded recount. Of more than 37,000 votes cast in the 37th District, 92 votes had separated the two candidates in the year's closest legislative race.

The recount at Fairfax Circuit Court yesterday took a little more than three hours and cost about $2,000, according to the Fairfax County Electoral Board. Cuccinelli's margin grew by nine votes.

The outcome did not decide control of the 40-seat chamber. Democrats, after picking up four seats, will have a 21-seat majority.

It is rare for a recount to reverse the outcome of an election. A notable exception: Del. James M. Scott (D-Fairfax) overcame a deficit during a recount in 1991 and won by a single vote.

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