Election 2020: Biden wins Chesco, Comitta, Kane win st. Senate seats; 2 legislative races too close to call

Updated Monday, 7:30 to better reflect recount status in the 158th District.

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times @mikemcgannpa

It’s not just the presidential race that continues to be too close to call: a pair of Chester County state legislative races are basically too close to call — both await the last of provisional/military/foreign ballots and may well head to recounts in the coming weeks.

While Chester County as a whole voted overwhelmingly for Democrat Joe Biden — he won the county by about 17 points and appears poised to be declared the winner nationally this weekend — the down ballot races appeared to get little in the way of coattails, making a number of them razor thin close.

Here’s what we know as of Saturday morning:

In the 158th State House District, incumbent Democrat Christina Sappey holds a narrow 500 vote margin over former State Rep. Eric Roe, her Republican challenger. In the 160th, Democrat Anton Andrew trails Republican Craig Williams by about 600 votes. Both races could swing depending on the number of provisional ballots cast and counted. It seems likely 160 will end up in a recount, as the numbers close, while 158 is above the automatic recount number.

Elsewhere in the county, the results were a bit more clear cut.

U.S. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (D-6) won easy reelection over Republican John Emmons for a second term in Congress.

State Rep. Carolyn Comitta (D-156) won a promotion to the state Senate in the 19th District, defeating Republican Kevin Runey easily. In the 9th Senatorial District, on the back of a strong performance in the Delaware County portion of the district, Democrat John Kane appears to have defeated incumbent Republican Senator Tom Killion, right now showing a lead of more than 5,000 votes.

In general, incumbents did well in Chester County state house races.

In the 13th, incumbent Republican John Lawrence cruised past Democrat Richard Ruggieri. The 26th, State Rep. Tim Hennessey won fairly easy reelection over Democrat Paul Friel in one of the most-watched races in the county.

In the 74th District, State Rep. Dan Williams (D) won easy reelection over Republican Dale Hensel.

In the 155th District, State Rep. Danielle Friel Otten (D) cruised to reelection over Republican Michael Taylor.

In the 156th District race — with candidates seeking to replace Comitta, who won her state Senate race — West Chester Mayor Dianne Herrin (D) held off Republican Lee Iacono.

In the 157th District, State Rep. Melissa Shusterman (D) won easy reelection over Republican Bryan Walters.

In the statewide races, the state Row Office races were extremely close.

It appears Democratic Attorney General Josh Shapiro held off Republican Heather Heidelbaugh, holding a margin of about 300,000 votes statewide.

In something of an upset, it looks like Republicans won two other Row Office races:

Republican Tim DeFoor is leading Democrat Nina Ahmad in the race for Auditor General, with a 200,000 vote lead.

Incumbent State Treasurer Democrat Joe Torsella appears to have lost to Republican Stacy Garrity by about 100,000 votes statewide.

As of this writing, there were still about 89,000 mail in ballots uncounted — and along with provisional ballots — those votes are expected to lean Democratic, but it is unclear whether there will be enough to change any of the results.

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