RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The most extensive recount in modern Virginia political history will involve tens of thousands of people statewide to determine the state's next attorney general.
The recount begins Monday in Fairfax County and the cities of Alexandria and Chesapeake before moving to every jurisdiction in the state on Tuesday and Wednesday. Those three localities get a head start because of the extensive hand counting of ballots entailed in their recount or simply the sheer number of ballots and machines to be checked, which is the case in Fairfax County.
A three-judge recount court will convene on Thursday in Richmond to rule on challenged ballots that emerge from the re-tabulation.
Democrat Mark Herring should know by Friday if his 165-vote edge holds or if Republican Mark Obenshain has picked up enough votes to surpass his fellow state senator — or closed it sufficiently to take it one step further.
Obenshain's camp has signaled the recount might not be the candidate's last gasp. They could play a rare, little-used card, taking the race to the General Assembly as a contested election and letting the Republican-majority body decide the race or call for a new election.
Steve Szkotak can be reached on Twitter at http://twitter.com/sszkotakap.
State Board of Elections: http://www.sbe.virginia.gov/