The Republican primary for the 43rd Senate District is too close to call. The incumbent, Roy McDonald, and Saratoga County Clerk Kathy Marchione are within 200 votes of each other. But both will definitely be on the ballot on minor party lines. Matt Hunter has the story.
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – "Stay tuned, we're in extra innings.”
Senator Roy McDonald begged his supporters to be patient as they headed for home late Thursday night.
Hours after the polls closed, the outcome in the Republican primary in the 43rd Senate District was far too close to call as challenger Kathy Marchione held a narrow lead over the incumbent, McDonald.
"One thing is certain, we have the political bosses and special interests very nervous this evening," Marchione told her supporters from her headquarters in Mechanicville.
"It would be nice to win it all by a big margin but it's not going to be,” McDonald said. “It shows that people paid attention and that they're going to be a participating part of our process."
Despite Marchione’s overall lead, McDonald did hold a slim lead in Saratoga County, where both candidates call home. Marchione has been the county clerk since 1997.
All along she made McDonald's controversial vote for June's Marriage Equality Act a key issue in this campaign. The senator previously voted against legalizing same sex marriage in 2009.
"There's no way I would've changed my mind on that issue,” Marchione said Thursday night. “What he did, he changed quickly, he changed slowly, he changed his mind."
McDonald has long said he wouldn't regret his vote, even if it cost him his re-election bid, but he wasn't ready to concede whether that was why Thursday's vote margin was so razor thin.
With numerous precincts yet to report and 1,137 absentee ballots to count, it could be days before a winner is named.
While both will be on the November ballot no matter what, each is holding out hope their name will appear on the Republican line.
"I wouldn't know, I don't have a crystal ball,” Marchione said. “There's a lot of absentees out there so we'll just have to see how it goes."
"Believe it or not this is only part of the way, November 6th is still the main objective," McDonald said.
McDonald has secured his spot on the ballot with an official endorsement from the Independence Party while Marchione won a second primary Thursday and will appear on the Conservative Party line.
The 43rd Senate District includes parts of Saratoga, Washington, Columbia and Rensselaer counties.
McDonald thanks his supporters
Albany/HV: 43rd Senate District Republican primary too close to call
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