The special election to fill the House seat in New York's 20th congressional district was held on Tuesday, but it's likely to drag on for a while. With only 65 votes separating Democrat Scott Murphy from Republican Jim Tedisco, the absentee and military ballots will prove pivotal, and those won't stop coming in until later this month. The tally of those votes will officially begin April 14th.
In the meantime, both parties have started spinning hard, in preparation for a political fight over declaring victory -- not to mention a possible recount down the line. Early Wednesday morning, the National Republican Congressional Committee sent out a fundraising e-mail about the vote, asking supporters for donations to help prevent Democrats from stealing the election.The subject line of the e-mail reads, "Don't Let 'em Pull a Franken," and in the body, NRCC Executive Director Guy Harrison writes (his emphasis):
Don’t let the Democrats steal this election. Less than 80 ballots separate Republican Jim Tedisco and his Democrat opponent. We cannot afford to allow the Democrats to steal this election...
Democrats have almost succeeded in stealing the election in Minnesota and seating Al Franken. We cannot allow them to manipulate electoral results to seat another tax-troubled liberal.
Meanwhile, according to the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza, Democrats are projecting that Murphy will end up winning the election by 210 votes after the smoke has cleared. Republicans dispute that, and though they're not providing a similar projection, they are saying they believe Tedisco will win because of the traditional GOP advantage in absentee and military ballots.