Democrat Larry Barnett conceded defeat Thursday in a shockingly close election for a Chesterfield County seat in the House of Delegates, taking one of a handful of possible recounts off the boards as Republicans try to hold on to a razor-thin 51-49 advantage.
Republican Del. Roxann L. Robinson led Barnett by just 124 votes, according to unofficial results from the Virginia Department of Elections. Robinson was expected to easily win re-election in the Chesterfield-based 27th District, and her narrow victory gives little solace to Republicans who, at latest count, lost 15 seats in Tuesday’s elections. Republicans also suffered defeat in Virginia’s three statewide races — those for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general.
Robinson has held the seat since she easily won a 2010 special election. She was unopposed in 2011 and 2013, then won re-election by more than 3,000 votes in 2015.
“I want to congratulate Ms. Robinson on her victory, and I wish her the best,” Barnett, a mental health professional, said in a statement released Thursday afternoon. “This campaign has been such an unbelievable experience for me. I was amazed at the support we saw on the ground, and I want to thank everyone who was involved in our grass-roots campaign.”