ERIE COUNTY N.Y. (WIVB) – It’s a close call in several assembly races in Erie County, both in the 146th and 143rd districts. Each race is waiting on the results of thousands of absentee ballots before deciding a winner.
“We have to use our patience, which is not my favorite thing in the world. but patience is the word of the day,” said Robin Wolfgang who’s running as the Republican candidate in the 146th district.
Wolfgang and incumbent democrat candidate, Karen McMahon are in a waiting game.
“I’m just gonna sit tight. In the meantime though I’m pretty confident in my position as it stands,” McMahon said.
103 voted separate the two candidates with McMahon in the lead. There are more than 16,000 absentee ballot that need to be counted in the 146th assembly district seat.
Political analyst Carl Calabrese says this kind of turnout is unusual.
“Historically you don’t see numbers of the New York state assembly, incumbent numbers of the assembly, defeated,” he said. “It’s too early to call but they are very close races.”
In the 143rd Assembly race between incumbent, democrat Monica Wallace and Republican Frank Smierciak. Smierciak has the lead, but thousands of absentee ballots need to be counted.
“Happy, excited, and tired, very tired, but we put in a lot of effort and were confident things are looking good,” Smiercial said. He’s leading the race by more than 2,300 votes.
In a statement, Wallace says at this point the race for the seat is simply too close to call.
“There was unprecedented turnout in this election, and while my opponent currently has a slight lead, over 11,000 absentee ballots have yet to be counted. Those votes skew considerably in favor of Democrats to Republicans.
I want to thank the voters of the 143rd Assembly District for coming out in huge numbers to make sure their voices were heard. We just have to remain patient and await counting of absentee ballots before we will know who the voters chose.
I’m encouraged by the high turnout in this election, and I’m hopeful that the total vote count will show that the people of the 143rd Assembly District chose me to continue to represent them in the Legislature.
Thank you to all the volunteers, campaign staff, and brothers and sisters in labor who worked tirelessly to get our message out, and thank you to every single person who came out to vote and everyone who supported my campaign.”143rd District Assemblymember Democrat Monica Wallace
Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.
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