Ortiz Jones not giving up; Hurd claims victory in District 23 congressional race
689 votes separate Democratic challenger from Republican incumbent
SAN ANTONIO – Despite 100 percent of the vote counted and incumbent Republican Will Hurd claiming victory, Democratic challenger Gina Ortiz Jones is not ready to concede the U.S. Representative District 23 race.
With all 342 precincts reporting, Hurd received 102,903 votes compared to 102,214 for Ortiz Jones, who isn't ready to wave the white flag.
"This election is not over. Every vote matters and must be counted," Noelle Rosellini, spokeswoman for Ortiz Jones, said in a statement Wednesday. "Gina's campaign has been powered by grassroots energy from day one, and we won't stop working until every provisional ballot, absentee ballot and military or overseas ballot has been counted."
It appeared that Ortiz Jones was resigned to having lost the election after The Associated Press called the race for Hurd late Tuesday night.
"It didn't shake out the way we wanted, but we ran a campaign that we are proud of," she told reporters.
The @AP has withdrawn its call of the Texas 23rd Congressional District race for GOP Rep. Will Hurd and deleted a tweet saying he won. Votes have come in higher than anticipated for Democrat Gina Ortiz Jones. Follow AP's #Election2018 coverage. #TXelection https://t.co/eeoi2EgGbH— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) November 7, 2018
But at 12:49 a.m. Wednesday, the AP withdrew its call for the race, saying higher-than-anticipated votes came in for the Democrat. About two hours later, the results showed Ortiz Jones winning by 282 votes, but that changed about an hour later, giving Hurd the lead again by 689 votes.
"With all precincts reporting, I’m proud to have won another tough re-election in the 23rd Congressional District of Texas," Hurd said in a statement Wednesday. "I'm proud to be the first person to hold this tough seat three elections in a row for more than two decades. I'm ready to get back to work for my constituents."
If Ortiz Jones requests a recount, Texas law requires that a candidate put up a deposit of $100 per precinct per county the race is being held in, Bexar County Elections Administrator Jacquelyn Callanen said in a news conference Wednesday.
Since there are 342 precincts in District 23, Ortiz Jones would need to pay a deposit of $34,200.
But her campaign stressed they haven't asked for a recount and will wait until all the provisional ballots, absentee ballots, ballots improperly rejected on technicalities and military/overseas ballots are counted.
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