Incumbent state Rep. Justin Simmons defeated Democratic challenger Kevin Deely by 448 votes in the official count for the 131st state House seat, according to information provided by the Lehigh County election bureau and the Simmons campaign.
In Lehigh County, Simmons edged out Deely by 16 votes. Simmons had 13,014 votes to Deely's 12,998, according to Lehigh County election official Tim Benyo.
Northampton County's official results showed Simmons defeating Deely there by 432 votes, according to the Simmons campaign. Additional details were not immediately available.
In Lehigh County, Deely won by 239 votes in ballots cast at the voting machines. But when absentee and military ballots were added, Simmons edged ahead.
The race, called "one to watch" by Politics PA, was tight up to the end, with the unofficial count in Lehigh County as close as one vote. Despite calls to concede, Deely has yet to do so. His Facebook page asks supporters to help fund a recount if necessary. Deely leads the ballot box tally by 239 votes.
Benyo says the Lehigh County vote count will be certified when the rest of the ballots for other races are counted, which could still take a few weeks. "We have a holiday coming up, and about 1,670 more ballots to count," he said
After the results are certified, voters have five days to challenge the results. Benyo feels confident that the numbers will remain unchanged in Lehigh County.
"Both [Simmons and Deely] had representatives on hand while we were counting. If the results are challenged, we will just repeat the same process we just finished."
Here's the Lehigh County breakdown:
- Justin Simmons: 12,273
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 12,512
- Justin Simmons: 678
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 414
- Justin Simmons : 21
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 45
- Justin Simmons: 2
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 4
- Justin Simmons : 4
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 0
Military & Overseas Numbers:
- Justin Simmons: 36
- Kevin T. Deely Jr.: 23
- Justin Simmons : 13,014
- Kevin T. Deely Jr. : 12,998