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In official count, Democrat wins last undecided Ohio House race, now headed for automatic recount




Ohio state Rep. Richard D. Brown (D-Canal Winchester). Photo from Ohio House website.

In official election results from the Franklin County Board of Election, Ohio House Democratic incumbent Richard D. Brown looks to have won the only remaining undecided race, meaning that Republicans will control the House 67-32 instead of 68-31.

The official results Ohio House District 5 show Brown received 17,429 votes, or 50.21%, compared to 17,284 votes for Republican challenger Ronald Beach IV, or 49.79%.

Because the 145-vote difference of 0.42% falls under 0.5%, state law requires the contest to undergo an automatic recount, scheduled to take place Dec. 9. Before all absentee and provisional votes had been counted, Beach held a 96-vote lead in unofficial results.

“I am very honored to have the opportunity to serve the people of House District 5 in the 135th General Assembly,” Brown said. “I will continue to serve my constituents and all Ohioans with the utmost integrity and fairness they deserve.”

Brown is an attorney from Canal Winchester who first joined the House in the summer of 2017 after Democrats selected him to replace outgoing former Rep. Heather Bishoff.

Competing under maps declared to be an unconstitutional GOP gerrymander by a bipartisan majority on the Ohio Supreme Court, Ohio Republicans won 67 of 99 Ohio House seats in the upcoming General Assembly.

Republicans also won 11 of 17 Ohio Senate races up for election this year. With one pick-up in the Ohio Senate, Ohio Republicans will control that chamber 26-7 starting next year. Sixteen Ohio Senate seats were not up for election, and will be in 2024.

Going into the election, Ohio Republicans held a 64-35 supermajority over Democrats in the Ohio House and a 25-8 supermajority in the Ohio Senate.

This story was republished from the Ohio Capital Journal under a Creative Commons license.

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