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Democrat now claims victory in Senate District 15

Challenger Riley leads Republican incumbent Starr by 221 of more than 35,000 cast for them.

Democratic challenger Chuck Riley claimed victory Monday over Republican Sen. Bruce Starr in the final Oregon legislative race to be determined.

In the latest count Sunday afternoon, Riley, a former two-term representative from Hillsboro, amassed 17,930. Starr, a three-term senator from Hillsboro who had served four years in the House, won 17,709.

It was a rematch of their 2010 contest.

Riley's victory would give Democrats a net gain of two to boost their Senate majority over Republicans to 18-12. Democratic Rep. Sara Gelser of Corvallis unseated Republican Sen. Betsy Close of Albany, who was appointed to her seat in 2012.

Another update was planned by Washington County elections officials on Friday. They will count ballots that were submitted with the backs of envelopes unsigned if voters can be reached to verify them.

Republicans have not conceded the race.

After Starr went past Riley late Tuesday night, Riley regained a 13-vote lead Friday, and then the gap has widened.

The 221-vote margin would not trigger an automatic recount under state law. That difference would be above the recount threshold of 70, or one-fifth of 1 percent of their combined votes.

Libertarian Caitlin Mitchel-Markley won 3,546 votes, and 115 were cast for others.

Automatic recounts are at public expense.

Recounts can be requested even if they fall outside the automatic trigger, but the person or organization requesting it must pay the cost unless the recount reverses the result.


(503) 385-4899


Updates with Chuck Riley claiming victory in the final undetermined race for the Oregon Senate. Republicans have not conceded. Add a comment

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