GOP declares victory but Ohio special election too close to call

Republicans declared victory in Tuesday’s Ohio special election in a traditionally conservative district, although the race officially remained too close to call with 100 percent of the precincts reporting.

Republican Troy Balderson held a 50.2 percent to 49.3 percent lead over Democrat Danny O’Connor in the election to replace incumbent Pat Tiberi, who resigned to take a private sector job.

O’Connor declined to immediately concede, calling the race “a tie ballgame.”

Balderson was ahead by 1,754 votes but there are still 3,435 provisional ballots and 5,045 absentee ballots to be counted.

Whatever the result, Democrats believe that they benefited from a broader surge of support expected to help them in the November midterms. President Trump won the suburban Columbus district by 11 percent in 2016, and it has not elected a Democrat since the 1980s.

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