State Senator Evie Hudak has won her reelection bid against Republican opponent Lang Sias, according to the most recent tabulations reported by the Jefferson County Clerk and Recorder.
The current tally, posted Thursday, includes votes cast by overseas and military voters as well as those who had to “cure” their ballot because of questionable or missing signatures. Despite conservative assertions that military voters would favor Sias, a combat veteran of both Gulf Wars, the late-game vote actually widened Hudak’s edge. With these votes counted, Hudak leads the Republican by 411 votes, just a hair over the .5% margin necessary to trigger a mandatory recount.
The clerk’s office reports that there are still between 7,300 and 7,600 provisional ballots which remain to be counted before the election results are certified on November 20th, but it’s unlikely the SD-19 share of those votes will sway the race one way or the other. Although Hudak’s leading by only a razor-thin margin, Jeffco’s history lends no reason to believe that the provisional numbers will disproportionately favor Sias. Even if they did, Hudak’s advantage is just large enough to hedge against any unlikely gains for the Republican.
While there will not be a mandatory, county-funded recount, both Sias and the Republican party have the legal right to request one at their own expense. Hudak reports on her Facebook page that Sias has conceded, however, and she’s already joined her caucus in organizing for next year’s legislative session.
With Hudak’s victory, the Democrats have swept every single competitive legislative race in the county. That does not bode well for Jefferson County Republicans – by all accounts, with a few notable exceptions, the party ran its most promising candidates this year. That no Republican pulled out a single competitive state-level victory here evidences that the same national demographic shifts which betokened Barack Obama’s re-election are at play in the county. Republicans have been losing their grasp on Jeffco for years, of course, but 2012 signals that there’s little they can do to stop the bleeding.
Cross posted from Jeffco Pols