Virginia’s largest voting jurisdiction is set to begin a recount Monday for the tightest race in state history, even as one candidate raises concerns about the conduct of the election. Fairfax County is scheduled to start recounting more than 300,000 ballots cast in the state attorney general’s race between Republican Mark D. Obenshain and Mark R. Herring, a Democrat who leads his opponent by a mere 165 votes out of more than 2.2 million ballots cast last month. In a motion filed last week in Richmond Circuit Court, attorneys for Mr. Obenshain criticized Fairfax elections officials for not only missing a deadline for delivering ballots, but because “Fairfax election officials grossly departed from the security procedures” required by law. Court documents state that Fairfax officials did not transport some ballots to the county’s circuit court clerk by the day after the election canvas that ended Nov. 12, and that those ballots “remained unprotected by the legally-required security measures for nearly a month after the election.”
Brian W. Schoeneman, secretary of the Fairfax Electoral Board, said the board was investigating Mr. Obenshain’s claims, “but we are confident that the issues here were simply the result of inadvertent errors by Election Officials, the integrity of the ballots was not compromised, and there is no evidence of any tampering.
“Our chain-of-custody procedures are tight, and they are designed to ensure that even when errors are made the ballots are secure and remain within our custody and control,” Mr. Schoeneman said.