FOND DU LAC - Rick Gudex appears poised to knock off incumbent Jessica King in the 18th District state Senate race.
The results are not yet official but Gudex leads King by a mere 590 votes. The margin is less than one percent of all the votes cast in the race.
It took until early Wednesday morning for all the votes to be counted.
"As it stands right now Rick Gudex has won," said Winnebago County Clerk Sue Ertmer.
But the yet unofficial margin of victory is razor thin out of roughly 85,000 votes cast in the race.
"There is about a 590 vote difference is what we are seeing right now," said Ertmer.
So close incumbent Jessica King has decided not to concede the race. In a statement she says "...I am not conceding this race until every vote is counted and verified. After last night this race is to close to call and will wait until the county clerks have completed their canvass."
Gudex says he's not concerned about the canvass or a potential recount. Instead he says he's confident he'll be representing the people of the 18th District in Madison.
"I have no control over a recount and if she chooses a recount that is up to her, she has that right. But for the time being I am looking forward to heading to Madison," said Gudex.
A Gudex win will give Republicans a two vote majority in the state Senate. Significant, according to Lawrence University political science professor Arnold Shober.
"That two vote margin reduces the pressure on single Republican legislators to go along with everything so they can lose a defection or two and in a closely divided Senate even a two vote majority is not that big," Shober said.
But it's a majority that appears safe at least for this election cycle.
"You don't make up that big of a difference, if it was paper ballots that were hand counted by people that were tired at the end of the night you might find a few more discrepancies but these machines have proven to be quite accurate," said Ertmer.
And Gudex says he's ready to get to work on day one.
"We're going to be working on business, jobs and the economy just like I said throughout my whole campaign."
If the canvass shows a difference of 428 votes or less, King can request a recount at no cost to her campaign. Otherwise she can request one at a cost for $5 per ward, according to Ertmer.
The canvass needs to be completed by November 20 and King would have until November 24 to ask for a recount. That process would begin on November 26.
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