Brad Raffensperger, Republican seemed confident to become Georgia’s new elections chief but his Democratic opponent John Barrow refused to yield the race early on Wednesday, saying that every vote has not been counted yet.
Some media vents had previously called the secretary of state election in the Republican’s favor late on Tuesday.
Nonetheless, Barrow in a statement said on Twitter early on Wednesday “We need to make sure every vote is counted. Therefore I’ll wait for the remaining ballots to come in.”
He noted that the number of absentee ballots was higher than the border of votes between he and Raffensperger.
A victory for Raffensperger would mean he takes office after critics accused Georgia Republicans this fall of suppressing minority voting rights.
Raffensperger announced victory after winning more than 50 percent of the vote, with nothing less than 2,000 of Georgia’s 2,634 precincts reporting, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The AJC reported that Raffensperger said on Twitter “I’m very humbled and very honored to have won this race tonight,”.
The race went to a overflow when non of the candidate maintained a majority in the Nov. 6 general election.
Raffensperger, a businessman and former state legislator, assured to strengthen voter ID laws, update voter lists and improve voting machines in his new role overseeing state elections.
U.S. President Donald Trump and recently elected Georgia Governor Brian Kemp both supported Raffensperger.
Trump tweeted last week “Brad Raffensperger will be a fantastic Secretary of State for Georgia, “@VoteBradRaff is tough on Crime and Borders, Loves our Military and Vets. He will be great for jobs!”
The competition displayed the partisan separation still annoying the state after its hard-battled governor’s race, which saw broad reports of voting problems during an election supervised by then-secretary of state Kemp.
Kemp’s slim victory over Democrat Stacey Abrams came with complaints of hours-long waits in greatly minority precincts, polling equipment failures and worries about absentee ballots getting declined under strict rules that voters’ signatures correctly match the records on file. Abrams was aiming to become the nation’s first female African-American governor.
Raffensperger’s win, if validated, would be slap to Democrats, along with Abrams, who said electing Barrow would “protect the sanctity of the vote.”
Barrow, a U.S. representative for Georgia from 2005-15, promised to change the state’s process for updating voter rolls to ensure voters were not purged by mistake.