UPDATE on #PA18: Dem Conor Lamb ‘apparent winner’ with 677 vote lead

While you were sleeping, the race between Dem Conor Lamb and Republican Rick Saccone came down to the wire with the New York Time reporting that with all precincts reporting, Lamb leads by only 677 votes:

A 677 vote lead for Conor Lamb at 5:35am in Pennsylvania. #PA18 https://t.co/N9Gayw1oM4 pic.twitter.com/zabta5JtfS

— pat muldowney (@patmuldowney) March 14, 2018

NBC News calls Lamb the “apparent winner”:

FULL STORY: Democrat Conor Lamb is the apparent winner over Republican Rick Saccone in the Pennsylvania special election https://t.co/usVyKbAue5

— NBC News (@NBCNews) March 14, 2018

There are still some absentee ballots to count, but it doesn’t look good for Saccone:

The math doesn’t add up for Saccone to be able to overcome the current 641-vote deficit. The only outstanding ballots are: A few military absentees (I.e. just 14 in Washington County) + provisionals from the counties + about 200 uncounted absentee ballots out of Greene. https://t.co/1ZMimV14ZF

— Vaughn Hillyard (@VaughnHillyard) March 14, 2018

Still waiting on 200 absentee votes in Greene county and some provisional ballots, but it looks unlikely that those would be enough for Saccone. Also assuming all votes have been counted correctly.

— Aaron Franco (@AFrancoTX) March 14, 2018

And it doesn’t sound like Saccone is ready to concede:

Democrat Conor Lamb APPEARS to be winner in #PA18, with a margin of fewer than 700 votes. Republican Rick Saccone says “it’s not over yet.” https://t.co/9enYK2MJxN pic.twitter.com/NSR3qSnZkG

— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) March 14, 2018

There is some good news for the GOP, however. It’s unlikely that a candidate with Lamb’s moderate views will be able to win in Dem primaries in other red districts like Lamb was able to:

An important reminder: The Democrats handpicked @ConorLambPA in a convention. It is very hard to imagine party getting similar candidates through primary process. #PA18

— Brent Scher (@BrentScher) March 14, 2018

But get ready for all the “GOP in trouble” stories. They’re coming:

“…a sign of weakness in the beating heart of Trump’s political base — a place where red “Make America Great Again” caps were worn proudly and where passion for the economic protectionism that Trump has made his creed rivals that for the Pittsburgh Steelers.” https://t.co/uAwLyJHUFk

— Aaron C. Davis (@byaaroncdavis) March 14, 2018

Final version (tonight) of our story: Dems claim victory in Trump country, a sign Rs must defend a widening maphttps://t.co/1HFr8yJOfR?

— Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) March 14, 2018

Also note, because of redistricting in the state, Lamb will likely run in the new PA-17 district come November:

Hard to see how Conor Lamb (D) wouldn’t start out as the favorite vs. Rep. Keith Rothfus (R) in new #PA17. It’s a full eight points more Dem than current #PA18.

— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) March 14, 2018

With Sacco running in the PA-14:

Breaking: @VaughnHillyard reporting Rick Saccone (R) plans to file to run in new #PA14 next week. Very possible both Saccone & Lamb (D) could be serving in the House together come Jan. 2019.

— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) March 14, 2018

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