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As statewide recount activities wrapped up on Wednesday, Republican Sen. Mark Obenshain conceded the Virginia attorney general’s race to Democratic Sen. Mark Herring.

When election results were certified last month, Herring led Obenshain by 165 votes, prompting the recount request. However, the incoming results showed Herring’s lead growing.

In Fairfax County alone, there was a net increase of 297 votes in the Democrat’s favor.

“It has become apparent that our campaign is going to come up a few votes short,” Obenshain said, in a televised press conference in Richmond Wednesday afternoon.

“It was a vigorous and hard-fought campaign. But, it’s over,” he said.

Obenshain said he called Herring to concede and offer his support in the transition process.

“His kind words mean a great deal to me and I want to thank the Senator for running a spirited campaign,” Herring said in a message to supporters. “I wish him and his family nothing but the best as we head into the holidays.”

Locally, attention now turns to the race to fill Herring’s 33rd Senate District seat. A special election is anticipated early next year.

Earlier this month, Democrats and Republicans both nominated Leesburg attorneys to run for the seat, which includes portions of Fairfax and Loudoun counties. Jennifer Wexton is the Democratic nominee and John Whitbeck is the Republican nominee.

Neither have held elected office before, although both have run for other positions in the past.

The race for the 33rd District seat alson includes longtime state delegate Joe May, who will run as an independent.

After completing what Electoral Board Secretary Brian Schoeneman described as a “gargantuan undertaking,” recounting all of Fairfax County’s ballots, county election officials will repeat the effort on a smaller scale.

A recount in the 86th House of Delegates District is scheduled for Dec. 19 to 21. In that race, incumbent Del. Tom Rust (R) leads Democratic challenger Jennifer Boysko by 54 votes.

kschumitz@fairfaxtimes.com