Trahan, Koh Separated By Just 52 Votes In MA-3 Primary; Recount Expected

(Dan Koh and Lori Trahan Credit: Twitter)

LOWELL (WBZ-AM) -- With all precincts reporting in the MA-3 Democratic primary, Lori Trahan of Lowell leads Dan Koh of Andover by just 52 votes. Secretary of State Bill Galvin has ordered the ballots in the race impounded, as a recount is expected.

Under state election law, if the votes separating the top candidates are .5 percent or less of the total votes cast, candidates can then petition for a statewide recount. If Koh does decide to challenge the vote, Galvin says he would need 500 signatures from registered Democrats by Friday.

Trahan thanked her supporters Wednesday for sticking with her for a long 24 hours. 

"This race proves what we knew all along--that every vote truly counts," she said.

In a statement, the Koh campaign said they were committed to making sure all ballots are counted.

"Given the closeness of the results in the 3rd CD--with 85,000 votes cast and only a handful of votes separating the top two finishers--and the fact that all ballots, including possibly hundreds of provisional ballots, have not been counted, it's clear that the final outcome of the election will not be known for a few days," the statement read.

Koh, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh's former chief of staff, had the lead for most of the night Tuesday--but something changed as the votes came in, and Trahan, former chief of staff for Massachusetts Rep. Marty Meehan, roared ahead. As more than 90 percent of the precincts reported in, Trahan spoke to reporters--and sounded a lot like she was giving a victory speech.

"I was born here, raised here, and I stayed here," she told supporters late Wednesday night. "I stayed here in this district because I wanted to serve you ... That's what got me here today, all of you, that Lowell spirit, the spirit that will continue over the next month and will carry through until we get to Capitol Hill."

Trahan was the dark horse candidate in the race, but was endorsed by the Globe and got a huge bump in name recognition from that.

The Koh campaign said in their statement that, if Trahan is declared the winner, Koh will "offer his enthusiastic support for her in the general election."

"We're very proud of the race we ran," Koh told WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Karyn Regal earlier Tuesday night. "Very positive campaign, very respectful of the amazing candidates in this race, and so I feel very, very proud of where we are regardless of the outcome."

Ten candidates jumped into the Democratic primary to replace outgoing Rep. Nikki Tsongas.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Shari Small (@ShariSmallNews) reports

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