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Stolle to request recount; Freitas officially wins re-election

RICHMOND — Del. Chris Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, on Monday requested a recount in the race for the 83rd House District, where just 27 votes separate him from the apparent winner, Democrat Nancy Guy.

The 0.02% margin falls well within the state’s 1% threshold for recounts, and within the half-percent margin that requires the state pay for it.

“With just 27 votes separating me and my opponent, we must make sure that every vote is properly counted,” Stolle said in a statement. “I am truly grateful and touched by the calls and emails of support I have received since election night. I believe that the voters who live and work right here in the district deserve to know that we have left no vote uncounted.”

Guy could not be immediately reached for comment.

Barring recounts, the State Board of Elections on Monday certified the results of the Nov. 5 General Assembly elections — making official the results reported by local election officials. Democrats stand to hold 54 House seats and Republicans 45 pending the outcome of the Stolle-Guy recount.

The certification included the results in the write-in bid by Del. Nick Freitas, R-Culpeper, who claimed 56.22% of the vote in the race against Democrat Ann Ridgeway.

Freitas ran a write-in campaign after paperwork problems kept him off the ballot. He is the first candidate to win a write-in campaign for the General Assembly since 1989, when Jackie Stump, head of the Virginia arm of United Mine Workers, defeated Democratic Del. Donald McGlothlin Sr. in Southwest Virginia amid an uproar over a labor strike.

Stolle’s is the first and only recount request publicly announced since the General Assembly elections.

Two other races fell within the 1% margin but saw losing candidates concede. In the 27th House District, Democrat Larry Barnett conceded to Del. Roxann Robinson, R-Chesterfield, who claimed victory by 189 votes, a margin of 0.64%.

In the 7th Senate District of retiring Sen. Frank Wagner, R-Virginia Beach, Del. Cheryl Turpin, D-Virginia Beach, conceded to Republican Jen Kiggans. The margin in that race was 511 votes, or 0.87%.

Recounts in those races would have required that requesting candidates foot the bill.

Stolle has 10 days to file a formal recount request with the Richmond Circuit Court, said Deputy Elections Commissioner Jessica Bowman. The court will then schedule a hearing to hash out the time and place for the recount.


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