Democratic Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger, who flipped Virginia’s 7th Congressional District seat in 2018, is neck-and-neck with Republican Nick Freitas. But the margin is very close.
Spanberger declared victory on Wednesday night, saying she looks forward to continuing work on strengthening and protecting communities.
But NBC News has not yet called the race because votes are still being counted. Freitas has not conceded.
"It is a real horse race," Republican Party of Virginia Chairman Rich Anderson told News4. "I believe in the end, he will prevail. Nick is a hard and devoted worker."
Former Gov. Terry McAuliffe believes when all the mail-in ballots are counted, Spanberger will have an edge.
"I think Abigail's going to win it once all these votes are actually in and are counted, and I feel good about it," McAuliffe said.
Live Election Results
It was nearly midnight on Election Day before a clear picture of the vote totals emerged in Virginia due to an enormous number of absentee ballots that were not added until very late — and election workers are still counting, state officials say.
Election workers will continue to count ballots from drop boxes and mail-in ballots postmarked by Nov. 3 that arrive before the deadline of noon Friday.
In Fairfax County, the vote totals will change but not the race outcomes.
"We’re really looking at a maximum field of about 40,000 ballots, but we don’t expect to get nearly that number back," Fairfax County Registrar Gary Scott said.
McAuliffe says he also feels good about Joe Biden’s dominant win in Virginia but didn't like that most of the more than two million absentee votes didn’t get reported until very late.
It gave giving the nation a confusing picture of what was happening in the Commonwealth, with Trump leading through much of the evening.
"I even had Gov. Chris Christie send me a note, who was with Trump saying, 'We’re going to win Virginia?' I said, 'No, you’re not going to win Virginia.' They haven’t counted 2.7 million vote-by-mail and early votes,'" McAuliffe said.
McAuliffe says in future elections, the absentee or early votes that have been processed need to be reported as soon as the polls close and then can be updated later.
State election officials say they conduct a review after every election to see what needs improvement.