Updated 5:05 am
Republican Troy Balderson eked out a narrow victory over Democrat Danny O’Connor in the 12th Congressional District special election Tuesday, in a race to complete the remaining three months of former Representative Pat Tiberi’s term.
In unofficial results, Balderson won by 1,654 votes, less than 1%. President Trump, who campaigned in Central Ohio Saturday for Balderson, credited his appearance with putting Balderson over the top. The race was considered a bellwether of the midterm elections, and Republicans and Democrats poured nearly $8 million into the campaigns.
In his victory speech, Balderson said O’Connor had run a good race, and said he looked forward to meeting him again in the midterms in November.
Tweeting shortly before midnight, O’Connor called the race still too close to call. He told supporters the narrow results in a heavily-gerrymandered district were the result of their work.
Republican Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted says more than 8 thousand provisional and absentee ballots have yet to be counted. If those votes bring the vote differential within 0.5 percent, it could trigger an automatic recount. Even if it does not close the gap, O'Connor could still have the option to request a recount.