A Republican seat flipped Democratic in a wild recount Tuesday – with the Democrat winning by a single vote – creating a rare 50-50 tie between the parties in the House of Delegates and refashioning the political landscape in Richmond.
Democrat Shelly Simonds emerged from the recount as the apparent winner in the 94th District of the House of Delegates, seizing the seat from Republican incumbent David Yancey. A three-judge panel still must certify the results, an event scheduled for Wednesday.
Of the 23,866 votes cast in the Newport News district on Election Day, Yancey held a tenuous lead of just 10 votes going into Tuesday’s recount.
But five hours and much nailbiting later, after painstaking counting overseen by local elections officials and the clerk of court, Yancey’s lead narrowed before it gradually disappeared and then reversed, allowing Simonds to beat him by one vote.
The final tally: 11,608 for Simonds to 11,607 for Yancey.
This now means that no Republican bill can pass the Virginia legislature without Democratic votes.