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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.

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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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