Nathaniel Rakich

Where The Unresolved House Races Stand

As satisfying as a steady diet of election results is, it doesn’t stick to the ribs quite like real food. So we’re taking the rest of the week off for Thanksgiving; the next update to this blog will be on Monday. We’ll leave you with a roundup of where the four unresolved House races stand as of Wednesday afternoon:

  • California’s 21st District: Republican David Valadao now leads Democratic Rep. TJ Cox by 1,820 votes. Rob Pyers of California Target Book estimates that there are about 2,500 votes left to count in the district’s bluest corner (Kern County), but about 500 ballots left in its reddest (Kings County). This is increasingly looking like a GOP pickup.
  • California’s 25th District: Republican Rep. Mike Garcia holds a razor-thin 0.1-point edge (405 votes) over Democrat Christy Smith. Pyers estimates there are between 2,200 and 3,300 votes left to count here, but it is Garcia, not Smith, who has been gaining ground as more votes are counted. Garcia has declared victory as a result, but independent decision desks are so far withholding judgment.
  • Iowa’s 2nd District: The race for this open Democratic-held seat — the closest House race in the country — has gone to a recount. The latest results, with 21 out of 24 counties having finished their recount, show Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks 35 votes ahead of Democrat Rita Hart. However, unofficial reports from the remaining three counties say that Hart could gain 36 votes on net from them, which would put the Democrat in the lead by the narrowest possible margin: a single vote. Miller-Meeks, though, is disputing the recount procedures in two of these counties, and there is a discrepancy of 131 votes in Scott County, so this is a long way from over. The state is supposed to certify results on Monday, but historically, races this close have dragged on for months amid legal challenges.
  • New York’s 22nd District: The initial trajectory of the count favored Republican Claudia Tenney, who led Democratic Rep. Anthony Brindisi by 28,422 votes after Election Day, but absentee ballots have almost completely erased that lead. However, because of New York’s decentralized and disorganized absentee-ballot-counting process, no one knows exactly what the current margin is: Tenney likely leads by somewhere between 100 and 300 votes. With the initial count more or less complete, attention has turned to a court hearing this week over whether thousands of disputed absentee and provisional ballots will count. However, the proceedings have so far only exposed counties’ poor record-keeping procedures and added to the confusion over which votes have been counted and which have not. On Tuesday, a judge ordered counties not to certify results in the race until those questions have been answered, so we could be waiting a while for a resolution here too.

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