Could VA AG Race Go to Federal Court?

The Virginia Attorney General’s race remains too close to call. At last count, Democratic State Senator Mark R. Herring had a slim lead over Republican State Senator Mark D. Obenshain. If the lead evaporates, will Democrats take the contest to federal court? Rick Hasen thinks they might. His article in Slate begins:

The race for Virginia’s attorney general is about as close as it gets in a statewide race: At the moment, about 100 votes separate the two candidates out of 2.2 million votes cast. When I started writing this article, Republican Mark Obenshain was leading Democrat Mark Herring, but that’s now reversed. County election boards are checking their math and deciding which provisional ballots to count. It is anyone’s guess who will be ahead when certification comes Tuesday night. In the meantime, Democrats are up in arms over what they see as a new rule the Republican-dominated state elections board put in place last Friday to make it harder to count provisional ballots in Democrat-leaning Fairfax County.

Unless Herring builds up a larger lead, Democrats’ best hope for winning the attorney general’s race probably lies in federal court, and the results there are uncertain and may take a very long time to work out.

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