List of close election results

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This is a list of close election results at national and state level.

It lists results that have been decided by a margin of less than 1 vote in 1000 (a margin of victory of less than 0.1%). To provide context, after the first table is another table showing the distribution of winning margins in different areas. Depending on the area, from 1 in 40 to 1 in 500 election contests is decided by less than 1 vote in 1000. This list is limited to elections in which at least 1000 votes were cast.

According to a 2001 study of state and federal elections in the United States between 1898 and 1992, "one of every 100,000 votes cast in U.S. elections, and one of every 15,000 votes cast in state elections, "mattered" in the sense that they were cast for a candidate that officially tied or won by one vote."[1]

While not an election, a member of Congress once owed his seat to the drawing of lots. In 1902, after more than 7000 votes at three conventions, the Democrats were unable to decide among three candidates for nomination to Texas's 12th congressional district. Two candidates put their names in a hat, drew one out and the loser agreed to withdraw and support the winner. Oscar W. Gillespie won the game of lots, the nomination and the following general election, serving in Congress for 8 years.[2]

There are a variety of ways in which tied elections are settled. Some are decided by drawing lots or other games of chances. Others lead to a runoff or special election. Still others are decided by some third party such as the legislature or a high-ranking elected official. In one case in Crawfordsville, Indiana, in 1891, it was settled with a 200-yard footrace. In that case William Simms seemed to be cruising to an easy victory for County Treasurer when he tripped and fell 3 yards from the finish line allowing Frank Hollowell to win the race instead.[3]

Table of close national and state elections[edit]

Year Country /
Region
Election Race Margin
(%)
Margin
(votes)
Total votes
cast for winner
Description
1971 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 19 0% 0 16,410 The initial vote count had Republican William Moss ahead of Democrat Jim Burch by 1 vote for the sixth at-large seat in what was then a six-member district. But then a three-judge circuit court ruled that one of the ballots was "defaced" because the names of two candidates were crossed out with the notation "Do not desire to vote for these two". They did this even though the person who cast this vote (which was known because it was a signed absentee ballot) testified that he intended to vote for Moss. Throwing out the ballot created a tied vote.[4] The names of the two candidates were placed in sealed envelopes, and a blindfolded Elections Board chairman plucked one from a silver loving cup. Moss won.[5] Two years later Moss would lose re-election by 0.03% of the vote.[6]
2017 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 94 0% 0 11,608 The initial vote count had incumbent Republican David Yancey ahead by 13 votes. After a canvas that included provisional ballots, Yancey's lead was cut to 10 votes.[7] Following a recount, Yancey trailed Democratic challenger Shelly Simmonds by one vote out of 23,215 cast.[8][9] After review by a three-judge panel appointed by the Virginia Supreme Court, a disputed ballot that had been excluded as an overvote was instead counted for Yancey and the race was certified as a tie with the candidates to draw lots to determine a winner.[10][8] The drawing of lots was later postponed after Simmonds asked a state court to reconsider the dispute ballot.[11] On January 4, 2018, the names of each candidate was placed inside a film canister, both canisters were placed in a bowl and one canister was drawn at random by State Board of Elections chairman James Alcorn. David Yancey won the draw and the seat, giving Republicans control of the House 51-49.[12] Control of this single seat determined whether Republicans controlled the House of Delegates or if power was evenly split.[13]
1988 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts State Senate Democratic Primary Plymouth District 0% 0 4,543 George F. Buckley and Michael Creedon tied, but Creedon secured the nomination and later the seat.[14]
1996 United States / South Dakota South Dakota House of Representatives District 12 0% 0 4,191 Four candidates Democrats John R. McIntyre and Dick Casey; and, Republicans Hal Wick and Judy Rost were contesting two seats. In the initial tally, they had respectively 4195 (24.73%), 3889 (22.93%), 4191 (24.71%), and 4687 (27.63%) votes (16,962 total votes). McIntyre was initially declared to have been elected by a four-vote margin. Wick petitioned for a recount in accordance with SDCL 12-21-12. The recount was conducted in the presence of representatives for both candidates. The results were certified on December 4, 1996, and showed that Wick had been elected by one vote: 4191 (24.71%), 3891 (22.94%), 4192 (24.71%), 4689 (27.64%) (16,963 total votes). The South Dakota Supreme Court examined several ballots and invalidated one vote for Wick. The House then voted, mostly along party lines, 46–20 to seat Wick.[15][16][17] Remarkably, two years later, McIntyre and Wick would again tie (at least on the initial count).
1980 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire State Senate Republican Primary District 16 0% 0 2,438 Incumbent Frank Wageman found himself in a tied election after a hospitalization left him unable to vote in the election. Two numbered balls were placed in a black leather bottle, and the first one to roll out was the winner. Wageman's ball came out first and challenger Eleanor P. Podles demanded a recount that did not change the outcome.[18] Podles won a rematch in 1982.
1994 United States / Wyoming Wyoming House of Representatives District 21 0% 0 1,941 Republican Randall Luthi and independent candidate Larry Call each received 1,941 votes in a state House race in northern Lincoln County. On live TV (NBC's Today Show) Secretary of State Kathy Karpan drew a ping pong ball with Luthi's name out of Governor Sullivan's rumpled cowboy hat.[19][20]
2006 United States / Alaska Alaska House of Representatives Democratic Primary District 37 0% 0 1,534 After a recount, a state Supreme Court challenge and wrangling over five disputed ballots the race was decided by a coin toss, using a special coin with a walrus on one side and the seal of Alaska on the other.[21] Bryce Edgmon, the winner of the coin toss, went on to be Speaker of the Alaska House of Representatives.[22]
2015 Canada Prince Edward Island Provincial General Election Vernon River-Stratford 0% 0 1,173 On Declaration Day, Mary Ellen McInnis and Alan McIsaac had 1,172–1,174 votes. McInnis filed a petition for a judicial recount. Provincial Court Judge John Douglas discovered that a vote for Ms. McInnis was mistakenly put in the pile for Mr. McIsaac. The result of the recount was thus that they were tied 1,173–1,173. Pursuant to section 102 of the Election Act, the toss of a coin was completed by the Returning Officer. The results of the coin toss were in favour of Alan McIsaac.[23][24][25][26][27]
1843 United States / Indiana Indiana State Senate Switzerland county 0% 0 915 Daniel Kelso was initially up one vote on David Henry: 917-916. This election was extensively contested. It was alleged that two additional votes had been incorrectly given to Kelso, so that Henry had in fact won 916–915. There was also one fraudulent vote found in favor of Henry, so the Senate Committee concluded that the correct vote was 915–915. But the Committee also found that the county provision in case of a tie (to let county officials decide the winner) was unconstitutional, and so they reported that no legal election had taken place in Switzerland County and neither Henry nor Kelso won.[28][29] One book[30] reports: Switzerland County was represented in the Senate in 1842 by Daniel Kelso; in 1843, 1844 and 1845, by David Henry. Also:

"It has been repeated time and again that the annexation of Texas was carried in the United States Senate by one vote; that Edward A. Hannegan, then the United States Senator from Indiana was elected to the Senate by one vote, and that that one vote was given Hannegan by Daniel Kelso, then senator from Switzerland County, who was elected by one majority.

"This is an error, for Kelso, when he voted for Hannegan as United States Senator, represented Switzerland County by virtue of a majority of about 150 voters of the county, over Samuel Howard at the August election of 1842. In 1843 David Henry was elected over Kelso by one majority. Kelso contested the election, and the Senate declared that neither was elected, and sent them back to the people for decision, and at the August election, 1844, Henry was elected by a small but decided majority."

(An apocryphal story continues to be told, for example by ABC News, about a "David Kelso" winning by one vote in an 1844 Indiana Senate election, the one vote being the vote of a dying man whom "David Kelso" once defended.)

1998 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Republican Primary 13th Hampden 0% 0 876 Official election results showed that Matthew Ferri won the primary, garnering three more votes than opponent Rodney Fountain, but a judge later ruled that it was a tie. Fountain secured the nomination, but lost in the subsequent general.[31]
1839 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts gubernatorial election Governor of Massachusetts 0.00098% 1 51,034[32] Marcus Morton and the incumbent Whig Edward Everett received 51,034–50,725 votes respectively, with the remaining 307 votes went to scattering. The constitution of Massachusetts required a candidate to receive a majority of votes cast in order to win the office outright; otherwise, the legislature would have the authority to choose among the leading candidates. Morton exceeded this threshold by just 1 vote (50% of the 102,066 ballots cast), and had he not, the Whig controlled legislature would have been allowed to select the governor. The legislature could successfully deprive Morton of a majority if it disqualified the return from the town of Westfield. There was, moreover, an argument for doing so: the Westfield return was irregular and improper under the laws of the state because the attestation of its authenticity was not under seal. Instead, the return had been sealed first, and only afterward affixed with an attestation from the relevant local official. Despite pressure from partisans to contest this result, Everett refused. In the annals of American history there is not an equivalent example of a candidate in a major statewide election willing to forgo a victory so tantalizingly within reach based on, first, such a narrow margin and, second, such a readily available legal argument for invalidating disputed ballots.[33]
1988 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts Governor's Council Democratic Primary 3rd District 0.00340% 1 14,716 Herbert L. Connolly lost to Robert B. Kennedy by one vote, and it was his own. Connolly arrived at his precinct a few minutes after the polls closed and wasn't able to vote. Kennedy won the following general.[34][35]
1882 United States / Virginia United States House of Representatives elections, 1882 1st District 0.00476% 1 10,505 The initial tally had incumbent Democrat George T. Garrison up 70 votes on Readjuster challenger Robert M. Mayo. The Readjuster-controlled State Board of Canvassers then threw out the votes of Gloucester County and Hog Island precinct (Garrison had received all 14 votes from Hog Island). The new totals then had Mayo up one: 10,505–10,504. (A third candidate, the Republican John W. Woltz, received 168 votes).[36] Mayo was seated and served for a little over a year, but Garrison contested the result. The Committee of Elections then chose to accept the Gloucester County and Hog Island ballots and the House voted unanimously to seat Garrison.[37]
1868 United States / North Carolina United States House of Representatives elections, 1868 District 7 0.00484% 1 10,329 Plato Durham (D) was initially declared elected over Alexander H. Jones (R) with an 18-vote majority: 10347-10329. But the Republicans raised the cry of "fraud" and the votes were sent to General Canby at Charleston, who threw out enough to defeat Durham. Jones was then elected by 1 vote, 10329-10328.[38][39][40][41][42]
1854 United States / Illinois United States House of Representatives elections, 1854 District 7 0.00592% 1 8,452 On the initial tally, incumbent Democrat James C. Allen was ahead of challenger Republican William B. Archer by one vote: 8452–8451.

Archer contested. Livingston precinct had initially certified Allen and Archer's votes as 47–100 (in that precinct). But they later certified that they had made a mistake and the vote (in that precinct) should instead have been 46–102. In which case the overall vote should have been 8451–8453.

The Committee of Elections concluded that Allen had won by at least 1 and probably 2 votes and recommended that he be seated. However, the House voted 94–90 that Allen would not be seated and also voted 91–89 that Archer would not be seated either. The seat was thus vacated.[43][44]

In the 1856 special election or rematch between Allen and Archer, Allen soundly defeated Archer 13,081–10,136.[45]

1966 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1966 Peterborough 0.00626% 3 23,944 Conservative Party incumbent Sir Harmar Nicholls defeated Labour Party challenger Michael Ward 23,944–23,941. Ward would again challenge and lose in 1970 and Feb 1974, but would win in Oct 1974.
1847 United States / Indiana United States House of Representatives elections, 1846 District 6 0.0067% 1 7,455 Whig George G. Dunn defeated Democrat David M. Dobson 7,455–7,454.[46]
1962 United States/Minnesota Minnesota gubernatorial election Governor of Minnesota 0.00734% 91 619,842 The vote count after election day had Governor Elmer L. Andersen in the lead by 142 votes. Then-Lieutenant Governor Karl Rolvaag went to court and won the right for a recount.[47] After the recount, it was determined that Rolvaag of the DFL had defeated Andersen, Republican, by 91 votes out of over 1.2 million cast. Rolvaag collected 619,842 votes to Andersen's 619,751.[48]
1918 United States / Iowa United States House of Representatives elections, 1918 11th District 0.00768% 4 26,033 The sitting Member George C. Scott had been returned by a majority of 131 votes, which Thomas J. Steele contested, alleging failure to count votes cast for the contestant and illegal counting of votes for the contestee.[49] In the recount, the tally changed to 26,033–26,029 and after some legal wrangling, Scott was declared elected.
1991 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 53 0.00770% 1 6,493 On election night, officials determined that David G. Sanders (R), had won the seat by 17 votes out of nearly 13,000 cast. After a recount six weeks later, Mr. Scott was ruled the winner by a single vote. He immediately became known as “Landslide Jim.”[50]
2014 United States / North Carolina North Carolina District Court District 5 0.00813% 5 30,746 Lindsey McKee Luther defeated Kent Harrell for North Carolina District Court, District 5 by five votes: 30,746-30,741.[51]
1974 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, February 1974 Carmarthen 0.00851% 3 17,165 Labour Party incumbent Gwynoro Jones defeated Plaid Cymru candidate Gwynfor Evans 17,165–17,162.[52] Jones had also beaten Evans in 1970, but would lose to Evans in Oct 1974.[53]
2002 United States / Washington (state) Washington House of Representatives Republican Primary 26th Legislative District 0.00852% 1 5,870 Ed Mitchell defeated Kevin Entze by one vote: 5870–5869.[54][55] Adding insult to injury, one of Entze's friends admitted that they never got their ballot mailed. "He left his ballot on his kitchen counter and it never got sent out," Entze said.[56] Mitchell went on to narrowly lose the general election.[57]
1996 United States / Vermont Vermont Senate Rutland County 0.00911% 2 10,978[58] There were six candidates for the three Rutland County Senate seats. On the night of the election, John H. Bloomer, Jr. and Cheryl M. Hooker received the first and second highest vote totals. Hull Maynard received the third highest total with 10,952 votes and Thomas Macaulay received the fourth highest total with 10,934 votes.

Macaulay petitioned for a recount, whereupon the Rutland Superior Court determined that Maynard still beat Macaulay by two votes: 10,978–10,976. Macaulay's petition for further relief was dismissed by the Senate.[59][60][61]

1982 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire State Senate District 8 0.00934% 1 5,352 Incumbent George Wiggins (R) defeated Fred Belair (D) by 1 vote.[62]
1970 United States / Missouri Missouri House of Representatives District 116 0.010% 1 4,819 Both the initial count and a recount showed that incumbent Gus Salley (R-Warsaw) had defeated Morran D. Harris (D-Osceola), though a clerical error cost Salley 100 votes, indicating the real result was not nearly as close.[1] Harris brought the case to the House Election Committee to decide, but they chose not to overturn the results.[63]
1914 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1852 1st District 0.01073% 4 17,726 Frederick C. Hicks, a Republican, defeated the incumbent, Representative Lathrop Brown, a Democrat, by four votes, 17,726 to 17,722.[64][65]
1924 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1924 Leeds, West 0.0114% 3 13,057 Labour Party candidate Thomas Stamford defeated Conservative Party candidate A.F.G. Renton 13,057–13,054. This was the lowest margin of victory in a Leeds parliamentary election.[66]
1908 United States / Massachusetts United States House of Representatives elections, 1908 10th District 0.0121% 4 16,533[67] Representative Joseph F. O'Connell, a Democrat, defeated J. Mitchell Galvin, a Republican, by four votes, 16,553 to 16,549.[64] The record does not disclose the official returns, but a recount before a bipartisan board under the laws of Massachusetts gave O’Connell 16,553 votes, Galvin 16,549 votes, and two other candidates 1,380 and 1,187 votes, respectively, a plurality of 4 votes for Galvin, the sitting Member.[68]
1923 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1923 Devon, Tiverton 0.0122% 3 12,303 Liberal Party incumbent Francis Dyke Acland defeated Conservative Party candidate Gilbert John Acland-Troyte 12,303–12,300. Acland had also defeated Acland-Troyte in the by-election earlier that same year, but Acland-Troyte would defeat Acland in 1924.[69]
1929 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1929 Cheshire, Northwich 0.0129% 4 15,477 In this three-way race, Conservative Party incumbent Lord Colum Crichton-Stuart defeated Labour Party candidate Mrs. Barbara Ayrton-Gould 15,477–15,473. Chrichton-Stuart also defeated Mrs. Gould in 1924 and 1931.[70]
2016 United States / Vermont Vermont Senate Democratic Primary Washington County District 0.0135% 1 3,709 Superior Court Judge Timothy Tomasi determined that former Sergeant-at-Arms Francis K. Brooks defeated fourth-place finisher Ashley Hill by one vote, 3,709 to 3,708. The victory hinged on a disputed ballot from Worcester that Tomasi determined contained a vote for Brooks, but not one for Hill. Brooks went on to win the general election that fall.[71]
1945 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1945 Worcester 0.0148% 4 13,523 In this three-way race, Conservative Party candidate George Ward defeated Labour Party/Co-operative Party candidate J. Evans 13,523–13,519.[72]
1968 United States / Wisconsin Wisconsin House of Representatives District 25 0.0153% 2 6,523 Official count showed a margin of 3 vote for Joseph L. Looby (D) over Wilmer R. Waters (R), but it was 1 after a recount. A case was filed with the circuit court, where the judge declared the margin was two votes. An election committee investigated, but could make no proclamation of the true margin. After Waters appealed to the Republican controlled assembly, it voted unanimously to seat Looby.[1][73]
2002 United States / Connecticut Connecticut House of Representatives District 65 0.0155% 1 3,236 Republican Anne Ruwet defeated Democrat John S. Kovaleski by one vote (3,236–3,235).[74]
1924 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1924 21st District 0.0156% 10 32,089 Sitting Member Royal H. Weller had been returned by an official plurality of 245 votes, which the contestant Martin C. Ansorge contested. Following a recount, the tally was 32,089–32,079 and Weller was declared elected.[75]
1964 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1964 Brighton Kemptown 0.0157% 7 22,308 Labour Party challenger Dennis Hobden defeated incumbent Conservative Party David James 22,308–22,301.[76]
1870 United States / Indiana United States House of Representatives elections, 1870 4th District 0.0159% 4 12,561 Republican Jeremiah M. Wilson defeated Democrat David S. Gooding by 4 votes: 12561-12557.[77] Gooding contested. The Committee's majority report gave Wilson a "clear legal majority of 8", while the minority report gave Gooding a majority of 17. The US House then voted 105–64 (71 abstentions) "on strictly party lines" to reject the minority report, accept the majority report, and thereby seat Wilson.[78][79][80]
1950 United States / Maryland Maryland Senate Garrett county 0.0162% 1 3,080 Republican incumbent Neil C. Fraley defeated Democrat challenger Bernard I. Gonder by one vote: 3080–3079.[81][82][83][84] Gonder contested the result but to no avail.[85]
1983 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1983 Leicester South 0.0163% 7 21,424 Conservative Party challenger Derek Spencer defeated Labour Party incumbent Jim Marshall 21,424–21,417.[86]
2005 United States Virginia Virginia Attorney General election, 2005 Attorney General 0.01663% 323 970,886 Bob McDonnell was certified as the victor over Creigh Deeds following a recount.[87]
1988 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts Governor's Council Democratic Primary 0.0170% 5 14,709 In the recount, Robert B. Kennedy led Herbert Connolly by one vote: 14,716–14,715.[88] (Connolly had actually failed to vote for himself.)[89] In the recount, Kennedy again led by one vote: 14,691–14,690. Connolly contested the result. The Supreme Judicial Court considered 116 contested votes and decided ultimately that Kennedy won by five votes: 14,709–14,704.[90]
1829 United States / Kentucky United States House of Representatives elections, 1828 District 2 0.0179% 1 5,591 Jacksonsian candidate Nicholas D. Coleman defeated Adams candidate Adam Beatty 2520-2519.[91]
1974 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, February 1974 Bodmin 0.0196% 9 20,283 Liberal Democrat challenger Paul Tyler defeated Conservative Party incumbent Robert Hicks 20,283–20,274.[92]
2004 United States Virginia Commonwealth's Attorney Special Election Radford District 0.0211% 1 2,375 Chris E. Rehak defeated Patrick Moore by 1 vote, and a recount didn't change the margin.[93]
1970 United Kingdom UK General Ipswich 0.0234% 13 27,704 Conservative Party incumbent Ernle Money defeated Labour Party challenger Dingle Foot 27,704–27,691.[94]
1959 United Kingdom UK General South East Derbyshire 0.0236% 12 25,374 Conservative Party challenger John Jackson defeated Labour Party incumbent Arthur Champion 25,374–25,362.[95]
1964 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1964 Reading 0.0240% 10 20,815 Conservative Party incumbent Peter Emery defeated Labour Party challenger John Lee 20,815–20,810. Lee would later defeat Emery in 1966.[96]
1822 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1822 29th District 0.0241% 1 2,072 Initially, Isaac Wilson and Parmenio Adams had 2,093–2,077 votes. On a recount, the tally changed to 2,071–2,072. There were also irregularities raised. The committee of elections considered it "doubtful, from the evidence, who ought to have been returned". The House then voted 116–85 to seat Adams.[97]
1964 United Kingdom UK General Eton and Slough 0.0243% 11 22,681 Conservative Party challenger Anthony Meyer defeated Labour Party incumbent Fenner Brockway 22,681–22,670.[98]
1923 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1923 Durham, Sedgefield 0.0252% 6 11,093 Conservative Party challenger Leonard Ropner defeated Labour Party incumbent John Herriotts 11,093–11,087.[99]
1980 United States / Utah Utah House of Representatives District 44 0.0259% 1 1,931 A recount gave Republican Bob Curran a 1-vote victory over the incumbent Democrat Jen Patterson, after leading by 2 votes following the official canvass.[1][100]
1832 United States / Ohio United States House of Representatives elections, 1832 District 7 0.02675% 2 3,739 William Allen (later 31st Governor of Ohio) defeated General and 11th Governor of Ohio Duncan McArthur by two votes: 3739–3737.[101] According to Niles' National Register, a third candidate by the name of Murphy also won 55 votes.[102]
1899 New Zealand New Zealand House of Representatives Riccarton 0.02678% 1 1,867 Incumbent MP William Rolleston lost his seat to Liberal challenger George Warren Russell after a margin of only 1 vote separated the two on the final count.[103]
1876 United States / Massachusetts United States House of Representatives elections, 1876 3rd District 0.0268% 5 9,313[104] (depending on which count use) After much investigation, the Committee of Elections gave Walbridge Field the 5-vote majority over Benjamin Dean.
1970 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Democratic Primary 14th Essex 0.02722% 3 5,513 In a 3-way race, Edward J. Grimley, Jr. topped Gerard A. Guilmette by 3 votes, but Guilmette ran in the general and topped him by 2.2%. The two would meet again in both the 1972 primary and general with Grimley winning both, also in close races. Guilmette would then serve two terms representing 25th Essex.[105]
1970 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Democratic Primary 17th Worcester 0.02723% 2 3,674 Andrew Collaro defeated Robert J. Bohigian, but then Bohigian defeated him by 900+ votes in the general. Collaro and Bohigian would repeat this process in 1972 and then Collaro would represent 22nd and 15th Worcester from 1974-1992. Bohigian would serve until he lost re-election in 1990.[106]
1843 United States / Indiana United States House of Representatives elections, 1844 District 7 0.0276% 3 5,441 Democrat Joseph A. Wright defeated Whig Edward W. McGaughey 5441-5438.[107]
1970 United States / Rhode Island Rhode Island House of Representatives District 26 0.0284% 1 1760 After recounts, Democrat John F. Hagan beat the Republican nominee Benedetto A. Cerilli.[1][108]
1979 United States / Virginia Virginia State Senate District 37 0.0293% 9 15,379 Madison Marye (D) defeated Edwin E. Stone (R) by 20 votes and a December 4, 1979 narrowed the margin to 9.[109]
1998 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire State Senate District 16 0.0318% 5 7,867 Patricia Kreuger (R) defeated Stephen DeStefano (D) by 16 votes. Following a recount that was narrowed to 7. DeStefano appealed the recount but the count was only changed by 2 votes.[110]
1945 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1945 Manchester, Rusholme 0.0324% 10 15,408 Labour Party candidate (unofficial) Hugh Lester Hutchinson defeated Conservative Party incumbent Frederick William Cundiff 15,408–15,398.[111]
1976 United States / Massachusetts US House of Representatives Democratic Primary 1st District 0.0330% 13 19,694 Edward McColgan beat Edward O'Brien and then lost the general election.[112]
1929 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1929 Birmingham Ladywood 0.0335% 11 16,447 Labour Party candidate Wilfred Whiteley defeated Conservative Party candidate Geoffrey Lloyd 16,447–16,436.[113]
1964 United Kingdom UK General Preston North 0.0340% 14 20,566 Conservative Party incumbent Julian Amery defeated Labour Party challenger Russell Kerr 20,566–20,552.[114]
2006 United States / Connecticut United States House of Representatives elections, 2006 District 2 0.0342% 83 121,248 Democrat challenger Joe Courtney was up 167 votes on Republican incumbent Rob Simmons after the initial vote.[115] On the recount, Courtney remained the victor by 83 votes: 121,248–121,165.[116]
1955 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 55 0.0346% 2 2,891 John A. Mackenzie (D) defeated William J. Moody (D)[117]
1978 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire State Senate Republican Primary District 14 0.0356% 3 4,215 Incumbent Thomas J. Claveau (D) defeated Phyllis Keeney (R).[118]
1982 United States / Maine Maine House of Representatives District 69 0.036% 1 1,387 Unofficial counts said it was tied, but all subsequent counts were 1387-1386[1] Winner was Walter R. Sherburne.
1859 United States / Tennessee United States House of Representatives elections, 1858 District 9 0.0371% 7 9,437 Emerson Etheridge defeated Democrat John DeWitt Clinton Atkins 9437-9430.[119][120]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 Manchester, Clayton 0.0372% 11 14,800 Conservative Party candidate William Henry Flanagan defeated Labour Party candidate John Edward Sutton 14,800–14,789.[121] Sutton had beaten Flanagan in the by-election earlier that year.
1951 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1951 Belfast West 0.0377% 25 33,174 Irish Labour candidate Jack Beattie defeated UUP incumbent Thomas Teevan 33,174–33,149.[122]
1935 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1935 Kingswinford 0.0382% 16 20,925 Labour Party challenger Arthur Henderson defeated Conservative Party incumbent Alan Livesey Stuart Todd 20,925–20,909.[123]
1992 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1992 Vale of Glamorgan 0.0392% 19 24,220 Conservative Party challenger Walter Sweeney defeated Labour Party incumbent John William Patrick Smith 24,220–24,201. Smith would beat Sweeney in 1997.[124]
2017 Argentina National Deputy election La Pampa 0.0395% 76 96,121 The Justicialist Party (96,121 votes) defeated Cambiemos (96,045 votes). The Justicialist Party won 2 Deputies and Cambiemos 1 Deputy.
1990 United States / Illinois Illinois House of Representatives 55th district 0.0406% 6 7,392 Initially, Rosemary Mulligan and Penny Pullen were certified as having 7,431–7,400 votes and Mulligan was declared the winner. The trial court ordered a recount that then had them tied at 7,387–7,387. The Illinois Compiled Statutes required that ties be resolved by lot.[125] Mulligan won the coin flip and was declared the winner by the trial court. Pullen then appealed, and the Illinois Supreme Court decided that the correct vote count was 7,392–7,386, with Pullen declared the winner. Two years later Mulligan took another swing at the seat, and defeated Pullen in a race so close it also required a recount.[126]
1991 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 58 0.0408% 7 8,561 C. Timothy Lindstrom (D) was originally declared the winner, but later it was discovered that election officials in Greene County misread a “9” as a “0” and Peter Way (R) went on to win the election.[127][128]
2013 United States Virginia Virginia Attorney General Attorney General 0.0411% 907 1,105,045 Democratic candidate Mark Herring defeated Republican candidate Mark Obenshain. The initial count was 1,103,777–1,103–612 — a 165 or 0.01% margin. The recount was 1,105,045–1,104,138 — a 907 or 0.04% margin.[129]
1994 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts Governor's Council Democratic Primary 4th District 0.0420% 26 30,989 Christopher A. Iannella, Jr. defeated John J. Kerrigan. Iannella won the general unopposed.[130]
1870 United States / South Carolina United States House of Representatives elections, 1870 At large 0.0425% 61 71,803 South Carolina was readmitted to Congress in 1868, after passage of the 14th Amendment. That amendment ended the three-fifths rule effectively raising the population of states that once had slavery. As a result, South Carolina and other slave states tried to seat extra members of Congress. South Caroline choose two additional congress members during at-large election. In one of those, Johann Peter Martin Epping defeated Lucius W. Wimbush by 61 votes: 71803-71742. But the House refused to seat him and the other at-large winner. "A number of southern states upon readmission claimed that since their slaves were emancipated, they were entitled to larger delegations in the House. Epping's election falls in this category. The claims were rejected by the House."[131][132][133][134]
2006 United States / Vermont Vermont Auditor of Accounts election, 2006 Vermont Auditor of Accounts 0.0456% 102 111,770 The initial count gave the victory to Randy Brock (R) by 137 votes, but after a recount, Thomas M. Salmon (D) was declared the winner by just 102 votes. The final tally gave Salmon 111,770 votes and Republican Brock 111,668.[135]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 Portsmouth, Central 0.0457% 7 7,666 In this four-way race, Conservative Party candidate Frank Privett defeated National Liberal candidate T. Fisher 7,666–7,659.[136]
1853 United States / Georgia (U.S. state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1852 District 3 0.0478% 5 5,232 Democrat David J. Bailey defeated Whig Robert P. Trippe 5232-5227.[137]
1945 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1945 Cheshire, Northwich 0.0486% 15 15,477 In this three-way race, Conservative Party candidate John Foster defeated Labour Party candidate Prof. Robert Chorley 15,477–15,473.[70]
2016 United States / Vermont Vermont House of Representatives Windsor-Orange 1 District 0.0498% 1 1,004 This was the fourth matchup between incumbent Democrat Sarah Buxton and Republican David Ainsworth (their first matchup had also been decided by one vote). The initial tally had Buxton leading by 3 votes: 1,003–1,000.

The first recount had them both tied at 1,000.

The second recount then had Ainsworth win by one vote 1,004–1,003. Buxton did not make any further appeals and this was the final result.[138][139]

1940 United States/Kansas Kansas gubernatorial election Governor of Kansas 0.0505% 430 425,928 Burke came within 430 votes of beating Gov. Ratner for reelection.[140][141]
1854 United States / Pennsylvania United States House of Representatives elections, 1854 District 5 0.0510% 8 7,842 Democrat John Cadwalader defeated anti-Nebraska Whig Jones 7842-7834.
1833 United States / Indiana United States House of Representatives elections, 1832 District 2 0.0520% 2 1921 In this 6-way race, Whig John Ewing defeated Democrat John W. Davis by 2 votes: 1921–1919.[142][143]
1870 United States / Pennsylvania United States House of Representatives elections, 1870 District 17 0.0532% 11 10,335 Democrat challenger Milton Speer defeated Republican incumbent Daniel J. Morrell by 11 votes: 10335-10324.[144][145][146] Morrell declined to contest the results, blaming the loss on the "base treachery and debauchery of professed Republicans."
1945 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1945 Caithness and Sutherland 0.0539% 6 5,564 In this very close three-way race where each candidate received 33% of the vote, Unionist Party candidate Eric Gandar Dower defeated Labour Party candidate Robert Ian Aonas MacInnes 5,564–5,558. The Conservative Party incumbent Archibald Sinclair had 5,503 votes.[147]
1974 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, February 1974 Peterborough 0.05407% 22 20,353 Conservative Party incumbent Sir Harmar Nicholls defeated Labour Party challenger Michael Ward 20,353–20,331. Ward had also lost to Nicholls in 1966 and 1970, but would win in Oct 1974.[148]
1983 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1983 Hyndburn 0.05414% 21 19,405 Conservative Party candidate Ken Hargreaves defeated Labour Party candidate Arthur Davidson 19,405–19,384. This seat was created in 1983.[149]
1986 United States / North Carolina United States House of Representatives elections, 1986 6th District 0.0546% 79 144,579 Republican candidate Howard Coble defeated Democratic candidate Robin Britt.
1964 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1964 Ealing North 0.0561% 27 20,809 Labour Party challenger William Molloy defeated Conservative Party incumbent John Barter 20,809–20,782.[150]
2010 United States / Vermont Vermont House of Representatives Windsor-Orange 1 District 0.0567% 1 882 On the initial tally, challenger Democrat Sarah Buxton and incumbent Republican David Ainsworth had 882-881 votes. On a recount, they were tied, with one mailed-in military vote for Buxton rejected. Buxton appealed and the Superior Court ruled that vote valid, so that Buxton still won by one vote (881–880). Ainsworth then appealed but the House voted along party lines to uphold Buxton's one-vote victory.[61][151][152] Remarkably, their fourth matchup in 2016 would again be decided by one vote, but with the result reversed.
1930 United States/Kansas Kansas gubernatorial election Governor of Kansas 0.0576% 251 217,171 Harry H. Woodring won a three way race between himself (217,171 votes), Frank Haucke (216,920), and John R. Hinckley (183,278).[153]"Our Campaigns – KS Governor Race – Nov 04, 1930". www.ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2017-06-17. </ref>
1959 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1959 Birmingham All Saints 0.0581% 20 17,235 Conservative Party challenger John Harold Hollingworth defeated Labour Party incumbent Denis Herbert Howell 17,235–17,215.[154]
1870 United States / Pennsylvania United States House of Representatives elections, 1870 16th District 0.0584% 15 12,859 Democrat challenger Benjamin F. Meyers defeated Republican incumbent John Cessna by 15 votes: 12859-12844.[155][156] Cessna contested the election and on January 18, 1872 the House Committee on Elections decided in favor of Meyers.[157][158] In a rematch later that year, Cessna reclaimed his seat.
1990 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Democratic Primary 11th Essex 0.0599% 5 4175 Edward J. Clancy Jr. defeated Thomas M. McGee.[159]
2016 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire State Senate District 7 0.0613% 17 13,880 The initial count showed Harold French (R) with a 13-vote lead over Andrew Hosmer (D). Following a recount, that widened to 17 votes.[160]
1998 United States / South Dakota South Dakota House of Representatives District 12 0.0621% 4 3,219 In this remarkable rematch, four candidates Democrats John R. McIntyre and Robert Litz; and, Republicans Hal Wick and Judy Rost were contesting two seats. On the initial count, they had respectively 3,229 (25.84%), 2,250 (18.00%), 3,229 (25.84%), and 3,790 (30.32%) (12,498 total votes). As in 1996, Rost won the first seat, while McIntyre and Wick tied for the second seat.

But on a recount, McIntyre was found to be ahead by 4 votes, with the final official tally being 3,219 (25.85%), 2,244 (18.02%), 3,215 (25.81%), 3,776 (30.32%) (12,454 total votes).

The House then voted 36–33, this time to seat McIntyre.[16][161]

1970 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Democratic Primary 6th Hampden 0.0625% 3 2,400 In a 3-way race, James L. Grimaldi topped Anthony M. Scibelli by 3 votes. Grimaldi would win the general, but then lose the 1972 primary to Scibelli. He'd win the seat in 14th Hampden twice and then lose the seat for 10th Hampden to Scibelli. Scibelli would serve from 1972 to 2000.[162]
1976 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts Senate Democratic Primary 2nd Essex and Middlesex 0.0626% 13 10,386 William X. Wall defeated James M. Shannon on his way to winning the seat.[163]
2012 United States / New Mexico New Mexico House of Representatives District 37 0.0638% 8 6,267 Two weeks after the election was over, the vote was still tied and went to a recount, which Republican Terry McMillan won by 8 votes.[164] After another close loss in 2014, Democrat Joanne Ferrary defeated McMillan in 2016.[165]
1828 United States / Maine United States House of Representatives elections, 1828 5th District 0.0642% 3 2,495 In the September 1828 election, Reuel Washburn and James Ripley had 2,495–2,180 votes. But Maine law required that the winner have an absolute majority of the votes, i.e. 2,498 votes and so Washburn was 3 short. A new election was held in December 1828 and Ripley won a majority. There was some further wrangling but eventually Ripley was declared elected.[166]
1988 United States / Iowa Iowa House of Representatives Democratic Primary District 67 0.0651% 1 768 Bob Hellyer won the Democratic primary for Iowa House District 67 by one vote. Hellyer received 768 and James Martley received 767.[167][168]
1971 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 23 0.0677% 27 19,958 Herbert N. Morgan (R) narrowly defeated H. Richard Chew (D)[169]
1832 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1832 District 18 0.0683% 6 4,393 Democrat Daniel Wardwell defeated Anti-Masonic candidate Daniel Lee by 6 votes: 4393–4387.[170][171]
1930 United States / Missouri United States House of Representatives elections, 1930 3rd District 0.0704% 46 32,669 According to the returns as originally certified, incumbent Jacob L. Milligan and challenger H. F. Lawrence had 32,665–32,626 votes. The recount of this precinct gave Milligan a clear majority of 46 votes, with the vote being 32,669-32,623.[172][173]
1974 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, October 1974 East Dunbartonshire 0.071% 22 15,551 In a three-way race, SNP challenger Margaret Bain defeated Conservative Party incumbent Barry Henderson 15,551–15,529. (Labour Party Edward McGarry candidate had 15,122 votes.) Henderson had defeated both Bain and McGarry earlier in the Feb 1974 election.[174]
2002 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 18th Worchester 0.0714% 4 2,803 Jennifer Callahan defeated Robert Dubois by 4 votes and then went on to win the seat. She lost re-election in 2010 and DuBois won nomination for the seat in 2012. He lose in the general.[175][176]
2014 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 1st Essex 0.0717% 10 6,978 James M. Kelcourse (R) defeated Edward C. Cameron (D).[177]
1919 United States/Maryland Maryland gubernatorial election Governor of Maryland 0.0735% 165 112,240 After several days of vote counting, Mr. Ritchie was declared the winner, 112,240 votes to 112,075.[178]
1870 United States / Kentucky United States House of Representatives elections, 1870 8th District 0.0737% 18 12,226 Democrat incumbent George M. Adams defeated Republican challenger Hugh F. Finley by 18 votes: 12,226–12,208.[179][180]
1923 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1923 Huddersfield 0.0746% 26 17,430 Labour Party candidate James Hudson defeated Liberal Party candidate Arthur Marshall 17,430–17,404. (In this three-way race, Conservative Party C. Tinker won 12,694 votes.)[181] In the previous year's General Election (1922), Marshall had narrowly beaten Hudson by a 0.5% margin.
1987 United States / Virginia Virginia State Senate District 39 0.0755% 35 21,217 William C. Wampler Jr. (R) defeated John S. Bundy (D) by 32 votes and a December 15, 1987 recount widened the margin by 3 more votes.[182][183]
1916 United States/Arizona Arizona gubernatorial election Governor of Arizona 0.0766% 43 28,094 The initial count had Thomas Campbell up by 30 votes. George Hunt, the incumbent, contested; but before that could be settled his term expired. The courts then allowed Campbell to take office as de facto Governor in January 1917. After losing a case in the county court and winning at the state Supreme Court, Hunt became governor in December 1917, with the courts deciding he'd won by 43 votes.[184][185] Had the initial count stood this race would have been even closer, with the margin just 0.0536%.
2010 United States / Vermont Vermont House of Representatives Rutland 5-4 District 0.0770% 1 650 After the initial count had Gale Courcelle up by 1, a recount took one vote away from Doug Gage (R). Subsequent action awarded it back.[186]
1974 United States | North Dakota U.S. Senate North Dakota 0.0771% 177 114,852 Five-term Republican U.S. Senator Milton Young defeated former Democratic Governor William Guy by 177 votes out of 237K cast.[187][188][189]
1990 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 7th Worcester 0.0780% 13 8,341 Democrat Paul Kollios defeated Independent Alan M. Tuttle.[190]
1981 United States New Jersey New Jersey gubernatorial election Governor of New Jersey 0.0784% 1,797 1,145,999 The results of the initial ballot counting was close with Kean leading Florio by 1,677 votes.. A recount took place over the next month and Kean was certified the winner besting Florio by 1,797 votes out of over 2.3 million votes cast.[191]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 South Shields 0.0794% 25 15,760 In this three-way race, Liberal Party candidate Edward Harney defeated Labour Party William Lawther 15,760–15,735.[192]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 Derbyshire, North-Eastern 0.0802% 15 9,359 In this three-way race, Labour Party candidate Frank Lee defeated Liberal Party candidate Joseph Stanley Holmes 9,359–9,344.[193]
1922 United States/ Delaware U.S. Senate Special Delaware 0.0812% 60 36,954 Democratic attorney Thomas Bayard defeated appointed U.S. Senator T. Coleman DuPont by 60 votes out of 74K+ votes cast. Bayard simultaneously defeated DuPont by 0.43 points in the election to the seat for the unexpired six-year term.[189]
1990 United States;New Hampshire New Hampshire House of Representatives Hillsborough 40 District 0.0818% 4 2,448 Robert Murphy (D) defeated Kathleen Souza (R) by 4 votes.[194]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 Salford, North 0.0836% 19 11,368 In this three-way race, Labour Party incumbent Ben Tillett defeated Conservative Party challenger Samuel Finburgh 11,368–11,349. Tillett face Finbburgh again in the 1923 and 1924 General Elections, winning in 1923 but losing in 1924.[195]
1966 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 2nd Bristol 0.08436% 28 16,609 Democrat Edward P. Coury defeated fellow Democrat Ronald Anthony Pina.[196]
1924 United States/Iowa United States Senate elections, 1924 U.S. Senate 0.08439% 755 447,706 Smith Brookhart won the election by 755 votes and was initially seated in the Senate without incident. After Brookhart was seated, Steck contested the election results. The investigation and recount took longer than a year, but on April 12, 1926 by a vote of 45–41, the Senate overturned the election results and gave the seat to Steck. This was the first tmie the Senate voted to overturn an election after the winner was seated. [189][197][198] The recount was contentious with claims of fraud and destroyed ballots, and with the special subcommittee inspecting each discarded ballot to determine voter intent. In the end the fact that Democrats wanted Steck elected and Republicans wanted to punish Brookhart for failing to support Coolidge, partisan politics likely did him in.[199]
1974 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives Democratic Primary 41st Middlesex 0.08443% 3 1778 Frank A. Antonelli topped Joseph Whelan by 3 votes and then lost the general election. He would win the nomination two more times and seek it two more than that, but never win the seat.[200]
1858 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1858 District 9 0.0852% 13 7,637 Anti-Administration Democrat John B. Haskin defeated Democrat Gouverneur Kemble 7637-7624. A third candidate Edward A. Andrews won 545 votes.[201][202]
1998 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 1st Plymouth 0.0858% 11 6,417 Republican Vinny M. deMacedo defeated Democrat Joseph R. Gallitano.[203]
1977 United States / Vermont Vermont House of Representatives Windham-4 District 0.087% 1 572 On election night, Democrat Robert Emond was declared the victor over incumbent Republican Sydney Nixon by one vote. Nixon then petitioned for a recount in Windham Superior Court under the provisions of 17 V.S.A. § 1361. The recount committee in that court found Nixon to be the winner by one vote and the court gave him a certificate of election.

However, a House committee did its own recount and found Emond to be the winner by one vote (572–571 according to one site[204]). Rather than force the full House to vote on the recount report, Nixon simply resigned, thereby giving Emond the win.[61][205][206][207][208]

(Note that the year of this contested election is incorrectly given by many sites as 1997.)

1846 United States / New Jersey United States House of Representatives elections, 1846 3rd District 0.0895% 16 8,942 John Runk and Isaac G. Farlee 8,942–8,926 votes.[209] There was a dispute over whether some 36 Princeton students' votes were legal. After some wrangling, the House narrowly voted to give Runk the seat.[210]
1961 United States / Virginia Virginia House of Delegates District 66 0.0932% 5 2,684 James B. Fugate (D) defeated Dr. Conley E. Greear (R). The initial count showed the two tied. But two recounts put Fugate up by 5.[211][212]
1848 United States / Ohio United States House of Representatives elections, 1848 District 10 0.0947% 16 8,454 Democrat Charles Sweetzer defeated Whig Daniel Duncan 8454-8438.[213]
1857 United States / Connecticut United States House of Representatives elections, 1856 District 4 0.0953% 16 8,403 Democrat William D. Bishop defeated a Republican named Orris S. Ferry 8403-8387.[214]
1923 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1923 Hertfordshire, Hemel Hempstead 0.0956% 17 8,892 Liberal Party challenger John Freeman Dunn defeated Conservative Party incumbent J C C Davidson 8,892–8,875. Dunn would regain the seat in 1924.[215]
1922 United Kingdom United Kingdom general election, 1922 Nottingham, Central 0.0959% 22 11,481 Liberal Party candidate Reginald Berkeley defeated Conservative Party incumbent Albert Atkey 11,481–11,459. Berkeley was later and briefly a Hollywood screenwriter.[216]
1986 United States / Vermont Vermont House of Representatives Chittenden 7-4 District 0.0962% 1 520 Ben Truman (D) defeated Terry Bouricius (I) by 1 vote.[217] Bouricious would win a 1990 rematch by 54 votes.
2000 United States / Montana 2000 Montana Democratic Primary Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction 0.09650% 61 31,634 In this 3-way race, the initial tally for Linda McCulloch, Gail Gray, and Mike Schwinden was 31,572–31,508–28,739. Gray requested a recount and McCulloch still won by 61 votes: 31,634–31,573–28,765 votes.[218] McCulloch would also go on to win the general election.[219]
1839 United States / Virginia United States House of Representatives elections, 1840 District 15 0.09652% 4 2,074 Democrat William Lucas defeated Whig Richard Barton 2074-2070.[220][221]
2002 United States / Massachusetts Massachusetts House of Representatives 3rd Barnstable 0.0983% 17 17984 Democrat Matthew C. Patrick defeated Republican Larry F. Wheatley.[222]
1852 United States / New York (state) United States House of Representatives elections, 1852 26th District 0.09956% 17 8,546 Democrat Andrew Oliver defeated a Whig candidate named Woods 8546-8529.[223]
1912 United States Kansas gubernatorial election Governor of Kansas 0.008% 29 359,684 George H. Hodges defeated the popular Republican Arthur Capper by a razor-thin margin of 29 votes out of 359,684 cast.[224][225]
1994 Canada Quebec Quebec general Saint-Jean 0% 0 38,894 Incumbent Liberal Michel Charbonneau tied with Parti Québécois candidate Roger Paquin. Consequently, a new vote was held 42 days later, which Paquin won by 532 votes.[226]
2003 Canada Quebec Quebec general Champlain 0% 0 33,919 PQ candidate Noëlla Champagne tied with Liberal Pierre Brouillette. Consequently, a new vote was held 36 days later, which Champagne won by 642 votes.[227]
2011 Switzerland Swiss federal election Ticino 0% 0 760,995[228] Marco Romano and Monica Duca Widmer both had 23,979 votes.[229] Initially, a computer programme was used to draw lots and Widmer was declared the winner. Following complaints and appeals, the Federal Supreme Court ruled against the Canton’s decision to use a computer programme for the lottery and ordered new manual lottery. This was conducted on 25 November, and Marco Romano emerged as the winner.[230][231] (The 760,995 votes in total were for 8 seats. The PPD won two seats. Romano and Widmer, both of the PPD, were tied for the PPD's second seat.)
2010 United States Massachusetts state legislature 6th Worcester district 0% 0 13,174 After Peter J. Durant was initially declared the winner by 1 vote, judge Richard T. Tucker ruled that one absentee ballot that was initially discarded was to be counted for Geraldo Alicea creating an exact tie.[232] Six months later, a special election was held where Durant beat Alicea by 56 votes.[233]
2015 United States Mississippi Mississippi state Legislative district 79 0% 0 9,178 Democrat incumbent Blaine Eaton initially won re-election over Republican Mark Tullos by drawing the long straw.[234] However, Tullos asked the State House to seat him, and they did so in a largely party-line vote.[235]
1978 United States Rhode Island Senatorial District 29 0% 0 8,220 Both Russell and Flynn had exactly 4,110 votes. On Jan 9th, 1979, a special election was held where Flynn beat Russell 2,546–2,038.[236]
1886 United Kingdom UK general Ashton-under-Lyne 0% 0 6,098 Conservative incumbent John Edmund Wentworth Addison and Liberal challenger (and English cricketer[237]) Alexander Butler Rowley were tied 3049–3049. The Returning Officer (and also mayor[238][239][240]) James Walker[241] broke the tie by casting a vote for Addison.[242][243][244][245]
1999 Canada Nova Scotia Nova Scotia general Shelburne 0% 0 7,751 Progressive Conservative Cecil O'Donnell tied with Liberal Clifford Huskilson (3,206–3,206).[246] The returning officer broke the tie by pulling Mr. O'Donnell's name from a box.[247]
1887 Canada Canadian federal Joliette 0% 0 3,065 Conservative Édouard Guilbault defeated Liberal F. Neveu. The deciding vote was cast by the returning officer after the two candidates tied.[248]
1896 Canada Canadian federal Assiniboia West 0% 0 3,005 Conservative Nicholas Flood Davin defeated independent John K. McInnes. The deciding vote was cast by the returning officer after the two candidates tied.[249]
1974 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire senate 0.00090% 2 223,363[250] Louis Wyman beat John A. Durkin after several recounts. The US Senate called for a re-vote, which Durkin won.[251]
1984 United States Indiana Indiana state 8th Congressional district 0.00171% 4 234,092 Indiana's Secretary of State (a Republican) certified Rick McIntyre as the winner by 34 votes, ignoring other recounted tallies that actually showed Frank McCloskey was in the lead. The Democratic-controlled House conducted their own recount. The House seated McCloskey after declaring him the winner by just four votes.[252]
2003 Russia Sverdlovsk Oblast Russian legislative Sverdlovsk Oblast District 163 0.00221% 5 225,484 Incumbent Georgy Leontyev held the seat by five votes,[253] despite allegations of vote manipulations, later rejected by the Supreme Court [254]
1910 United States New York 36th District 0.00242% 1 41,396 Charles Bennett Smith, a Democrat, defeated the incumbent, Representative De Alva Stanwood Alexander, a Republican, by one vote, 20,685 to 20,684.[255]
1997 United Kingdom UK general Winchester 0.00322% 2 62,054 In the General Election, Mark Oaten led Gerry Malone by 2 votes (26,100–26,098).[256] A total of 55 ballot papers were excluded from the count for want of official mark, of which 18 were votes in favour of Oaten and 22 in favour of Malone. Therefore, Malone would have had a majority of 2 votes had they been included in the count. On hearing an Election Petition in the High Court on 6 October 1997 Lord Justice Brooke and Mr. Justice Gage ordered that there should be a fresh election. The petition also stated that four voters cast tendered ballots after claiming to have been personated, but the personators could not be found and the allegation was not pursued.[257] In the subsequent by-election, Oaten crushed Malone (37,006–15,450).
2017 United Kingdom UK general North East Fife 0.00478% 2 41,848 The Scottish National Party saw off a challenge by the Liberal Democrats to retain the seat of former leader Menzies Campbell.[258]
2004 United States Washington (state) Washington gubernatorial 0.00473% 133 2,810,053[259] Democrat Christine Gregoire defeated Republican Dino Rossi, following two recounts, after the initial count and first recount showed Rossi as the winner.
1931 United Kingdom UK general Ilkeston 0.00569% 2 35,172 A.J. Flint (National Labour) gained the seat from George Oliver (Labour) in a straight fight (the joint smallest numerical majority in a UK Parliamentary election, since universal adult suffrage).[260]
2000 South Korea South Korean legislative election, 2000 Gwangju 0.00614% 3 48,828 GNP Park Hyuk-kyu defeated MDP Moon Hak-jin by an official tally of 3 vote difference.[261]
2001 Cape Verde Cape Verdean presidential 0.00791% 12 153,406 Pedro Pires (African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde) defeated Carlos Veiga (Movement for Democracy) in the second round of the election after neither won more than 50% in the first round.[262]
2010 United Kingdom UK general Fermanagh and South Tyrone 0.00855% 4 46,803 Michelle Gildernew (Sinn Féin) defeated independent Rodney Connor.[263]
1948 United States Texas United States Senate, Texas Democratic primary runoff 0.00880% 87 988,295 Lyndon Johnson is declared the winner over Coke Stevenson, despite suspicion about 200 mysterious votes from precinct 13 of Jim Wells County.
2000 United States Florida United States presidential, Florida 0.00901% 537 5,962,657 Republican George W. Bush defeated Democrat Al Gore after a mandatory statewide recount. An additional hand recount was halted by the United States Supreme Court but a later hand recount by media organizations confirmed Bush's win.[264]
1972 Canada Ontario Canadian federal Ontario 0.00949% 4 42,150 Liberal incumbent Norman Cafik defeated Progressive Conservative Frank Charles McGee.[265] A PC win in this district would have resulted in a 108-108 tie with the Liberals in the overall seat count.
2008 United States Alaska Alaska District 7 0.04% 4 10,083 Incumbent Republican Mike Kelly defeated Democratic challenger Karl Kassel 5,024–5,020 following a recount.[266][267][268]
1832 United States Maryland United States presidential Maryland 0.01044% 4 38,316 National Republican Henry Clay carried Maryland by four votes over Democratic President Andrew Jackson, but Jackson was reelected handily.[269]
1910 United Kingdom UK general Exeter 0.01047% 1 9,553 Henry Duke (Conservative), the incumbent at the time of the general election, re-gained the seat from Harold St Maur (Liberal) on an election petition in 1911. The court changed the original result (under which the Liberal had won by four votes). The revised result was the smallest numerical majority in a UK Parliamentary election in the twentieth century.[270]
2008 United States Minnesota United States Senate, Minnesota 0.01080% 312 2,887,646 After the first count, Norm Coleman edged out Al Franken by 215 votes, but following a state mandated recount, Al Franken defeated Norm Coleman by 225.[271] Coleman contested the recount, after which Franken's lead grew to 312. After the Minnesota Supreme Court unanimously rejected Coleman's appeals, he conceded the race to Franken on June 30, 2009, 238 days after the election.[272]
1994 United States Connecticut Connecticut Second Congressional district 0.01129% 21 186,030 (recount, not final) In this three-way race between Sam Gejdenson, Edward Munster, David Bingham, the initial official tally was 79,169–79,167–27,729 (186,065 total votes).[273] Following a recount, Gejdenson and Munster were 79,160–79,156 with 186,030 total votes cast. The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled instead that the correct final tally was 79,188–79,167 and so Gejdenson won.[274] (However the Court did not mention what the correct total number of votes cast was.)
1968 Australia South Australia South Australian House of Assembly Seat of Millicent 0.01362% 1 7,342[275] On 2 March 1968, Martin Cameron contested the seat of Millicent for the House of Assembly, standing against the sitting member, and minister in the Labor Cabinet, Des Corcoran. Narrowly losing the seat by one vote (3635–3634), the Liberal and Country League challenged the decision and the election was referred to the South Australian Court of Disputed Returns. The court ordered a by-election, which was held on 22 June. This was won comfortably by Corcoran (3994–3564), the Dunstan-led Australian Labor Party running the campaign on electoral reform.[276]
1968 Canada Canadian House of Commons Leeds 0.01376% 4 29,073 Progressive Conservative Desmond Code defeated Liberal incumbent John Matheson.[277]
1930 Canada Canadian House of Commons Yamaska 0.01427% 1 7,009 Liberal incumbent Aimé Boucher defeated Conservative Paul-François Comtois.[278] The riding result was later declared void, and Boucher won the by-election in 1933 by 84 votes (0.1%).
2016 United States New Mexico New Mexico House of Representatives 29th District 0.01447% 2 13,826 Republican Dave Adkins recaptures his spot in the New Mexico House over challenger Ronnie Martinez by just two votes.[279]
1949 Canada Canadian House of Commons Annapolis—Kings 0.01515% 4 26,400 Liberal Angus Alexander Elderkin defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent George Nowlan.[280]
2003 Somaliland Somaliland presidential 0.01637% 80 488,543 Dahir Riyale Kahin, of the For Unity, Democracy, and Independence party narrowly defeated the Peace, Unity, and Development Party's Ahmed M. Mahamoud Silanyo in a three-way race.[281]
1988 Canada Canadian federal London—Middlesex 0.01654% 8 48,358 Progressive Conservative MP Terry Clifford narrowly edged out Liberal Garnet Bloomfield.[282]
2012 Australia Australian Capital Territory ACT general 0.01854% 41 221,172 The Canberra Liberal Party received more first preference votes than the ruling Labor Party.[283] Ultimately the Labor Party formed a minority government with the support of the sole ACT Greens MLA.
2006 United States Oklahoma Oklahoma state 0.02085% 2 9,594 After a recount, Republican Todd Thomsen beat Democrat Darrel Nemecek by two votes for the Oklahoma House of Representatives seat in its 25th district.[284][285][286]
1935 Canada Canadian federal Vancouver—Burrard 0.02133% 6 28,130 Liberal Gerald Grattan McGeer defeated Co-operative Commonwealth Arnold Alexander Webster.[287]
1896 Canada Canadian federal Ontario North 0.02148% 1 4,655 Liberal-Conservative John Alexander McGillivray defeated Patrons of Industry Duncan Graham.[249]
1997 United Kingdom UK general Torbay 0.02250% 12 53,322 Liberal Democrat candidate Adrian Sanders gained the seat from the sitting Conservative MP Rupert Allason.
1904 United States Maryland United States presidential Maryland 0.02274% 51 224,229 Republican President Theodore Roosevelt barely carried Maryland over Democrat Alton Parker on his way to an electoral landslide.[288]
1900 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.02303% 1 4,343 Liberal William Forsythe McCreary defeated Conservative John Herber Haslam.[289] This was the second time in a row that a Liberal candidate defeated his Conservative rival in this riding by a single vote.
1900 Canada Canadian federal Bruce North 0.02422% 1 4,129 Liberal-Conservative incumbent Alexander McNeill defeated Liberal J. E. Campbell.[289]
2010 United States Illinois Illinois gubernatorial Republican primary 0.02515% 193 767,485 Bill Brady defeated Kirk Dillard.[290][291]
2016 United States New York (state) New York State Senate 8th District 0.02559% 33 128,965 John Brooks secured a spot in the State Senate by defeating incumbent Republican Michael Venditto.[292]
1912 United States California United States presidential California 0.02567% 174 677,944 Former President Theodore Roosevelt, running on the Republican and Progressive ballot lines in California (Republican President William Howard Taft was not on the ballot in the state, although he did receive 3,914 write-in votes), narrowly edged out Democrat Woodrow Wilson in California, but Wilson won a landslide in the Electoral College due to divided Republican opposition.[293]
1930 Canada Canadian federal Norfolk—Elgin 0.02654% 5 18,843 Liberal William H. Taylor defeated Conservative John Lawrence Stansell.[278]
2017 France French legislative (2nd round) Loiret's 4th constituency 0.02748% 8 29,114 Four-term incumbent Jean-Pierre Door of The Republicans (LR) narrowly defeated Mélusine Harlé of La République En Marche! by 8 votes in the second round. Harlé filed an appealed the result to the Constitutional Council,[294] which annulled the election on 18 December 2017 due to the number of ballots not corresponding to the number of signatures in one commune and the improper dissemination of electoral materials which was considered sufficient to potentially have altered the result of the election.[295]
2007 Australia Australian federal Division of McEwen 0.02794% 31 96,647 Liberal Fran Bailey defeated Labor Rob Mitchell following a recount and court challenge.[296][297]
2012 United States Iowa United States presidential Iowa Republican caucuses 0.02798% 34 121,503 Former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum defeated former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in the statewide Republican caucuses, the closest GOP primary election in United States history.[298] Romney had been declared the winner by 8 votes on caucus night.
2008 Canada Canadian federal Kitchener—Waterloo 0.02808% 17 60,534 Conservative Peter Braid defeated Liberal Andrew Telegdi after a recount.[299]
1891 Canada Canadian federal Wentworth South 0.02821% 1 3,545 Conservative Franklin Carpenter defeated Liberal James T. Russell.[300]
1935 Canada Canadian federal Souris 0.02833% 3 10,589 Liberal-Progressive George William McDonald defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent Errick French Willis.[287]
1887 Canada Canadian federal Haldimand 0.02865% 1 3,491 Conservative Walter Humphries Montague defeated Liberal incumbent Charles Wesley Colter.[248]
1896 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.02920% 1 3,425 Liberal John Alexander MacDonell defeated Conservative Hugh Armstrong.[249]
2011 United Kingdom Scotland Scottish Parliament Glasgow Anniesland 0.02927% 7 23,918 Incumbent Labour MSP Bill Butler was defeated by Bill Kidd of the Scottish National Party (SNP).[301]
2011 New Zealand New Zealand general Waitakere 0.02927% 9 30,747 National incumbent Paula Bennett retained her seat over Labour challenger Carmel Sepuloni after a judicial recount was requested by Bennett. The original official result had Sepuloni winning with a margin of 11 votes.[302][303]
1968 Canada Canadian federal Comox—Alberni 0.02967% 9 30,331 Liberal Richard Durante defeated New Democrat incumbent Thomas Speakman Barnett.[277] The riding result was later declared void and Durante lost the by-election to Barnett in 1969.
1891 Canada Canadian federal Nicolet 0.03016% 1 3,316 Liberal Joseph Hector Leduc defeated Conservative E. C. Prince.[300]
1945 Canada Canadian federal Colchester—Hants 0.03273% 8 24,439 Progressive Conservative Frank Stanfield defeated Liberal incumbent Gordon Timlin Purdy.[304]
1968 Canada Canadian federal Oshawa—Whitby 0.03309% 15 45,332 New Democrat Ed Broadbent defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent Michael Starr.[277]
2000 Canada Canadian federal Champlain 0.03325% 15 45,111 Bloc Québécois candidate Marcel Gagnon narrowly edged out Liberal Julie Boulet.[305]
1993 Canada Canadian federal Edmonton Northwest 0.03410% 12 35,195 Liberal candidate Anne McLellan narrowly edged out Reform candidate Richard Kayler.[306]
1974 Canada Canadian federal Drummond 0.03521% 13 36,925 Liberal Yvon Pinard defeated Social Credit incumbent Jean-Marie Boisvert.[307]
1964 United States Nevada United States Senate, Nevada 0.03565% 48 134,624 Democratic incumbent Howard Cannon defeated Republican Paul Laxalt.[308]
1979 Canada Canadian federal Halifax 0.03662% 15 40,961 Progressive Conservative George Cooper defeated Liberal Brian Flemming.[309]
1990 United States Ohio Ohio Attorney General 0.03672% 1,234 3,360,162 Democratic candidate Lee Fisher defeated Republican Paul Pfeifer after a six-week recount, earning him the ironic nickname "Landslide Lee".[310]
1896 Canada Canadian federal York East 0.03841% 1 3,425 Independent Conservative incumbent William F. McLean defeated Liberal Henry R. Frankland.[249]
2005 Canada British Columbia general Vancouver-Burrard 0.03862% 11 28,483 Lorne Mayencourt of the British Columbia Liberal Party defeated Tim Stevenson of the British Columbia New Democratic Party in a judicial recount.[311] Stevenson had actually been declared the winner of the seat on election night, but Mayencourt pulled ahead when absentee ballots were counted two weeks later.
2017 United Kingdom UK general Perth and North Perthshire 0.04075% 21 51,525 The incumbent Scottish National Party narrowly defeated Conservative candidate Ian Duncan.[312]
2011 Canada Canadian federal Nipissing—Timiskaming 0.04258% 18 42,271 Conservative Jay Aspin defeated Liberal incumbent Anthony Rota.[313]
2014 Australia South Australia Parliament of South Australia Fisher state by-election 0.04378% 9 20,559 By-election caused by the death of sitting independent MP Bob Such. The Australian Labor Party candidate Nat Cook beat the Liberal Party candidate by 9 votes.
2004 United States Montana Montana house District 12 0.0012% 5 4,220 The initial tally had Democrat Jeanne Windham losing to Constitution Party candidate Rick Jore 1557–1559. The recount had them tied at 1559–1559. The Montana Supreme Court then ruled that five votes for Jore were invalid, so that Windham won 1559–1554. A third candidate Jack Cross had 1,107 votes.[314][315][316]
2008 Canada Canadian federal Vancouver South 0.04779% 20 41,852 Liberal Ujjal Dosanjh defeated Conservative Wai Young after two recounts.[317]
2017 United Kingdom UK General Kensington 0.05171% 20 38,677 Labour Emma Dent Coad defeated Conservative Victoria Borwick after 3 recounts over two days.
1887 Canada Canadian federal Montmorency 0.05328% 1 1,877 Liberal Charles Langelier defeated Conservative P. V. Valin.[248]
1959 Singapore Singaporean general River Valley 0.05328% 5 9,384 People's Action Party candidate Lim Cheng Lock defeated Soh Ghee Soon of the Singapore People's Alliance.[318]
1892 United States California United States presidential California 0.05452% 147 269,609 Former President Grover Cleveland narrowly carried California over Republican President Benjamin Harrison and went on to reclaim the presidency in a rematch of the 1888 presidential elections, thus becoming both the 22nd and 24th president of the United States.[319]
2006 Canada Canadian federal Parry Sound—Muskoka 0.06064% 28 46,171 Conservative candidate Tony Clement narrowly edged out Liberal MP Andy Mitchell.[320]
2000 United States New Mexico United States presidential New Mexico 0.06114% 366 598,605 Since Florida's electoral votes decided George W. Bush's electoral college win over Al Gore, little attention was paid to the fact that New Mexico's outcome was even closer (in terms of raw vote) than the Florida result, this time with Gore coming out ahead.[321]
1988 Canada Canadian federal Northumberland, Ontario 0.06190% 28 45,235 Liberal candidate Christine Stewart narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Reg Jewell.[282]
1896 United States Kentucky United States presidential Kentucky 0.06212% 277 445,928 William McKinley was elected president twice by comfortable Electoral College majorities, but his only victory in a Southern state was his razor-thin win over William Jennings Bryan in Kentucky in his initial presidential run, becoming the first Republican ever to win Kentucky.[322]
1960 United States Hawaii United States presidential Hawaii 0.06226% 115 184,705 Just a year after becoming the fiftieth State, Hawaii surprised many political experts by voting for Democrat John F. Kennedy over Republican Richard Nixon, albeit by a very small margin.[323]
2013 Australia Australian federal Division of Fairfax 0.06264% 53 84,607 Clive Palmer (Palmer United Party) defeated Ted O'Brien of the Liberal National Party of Queensland following two recounts.[324]
1916 United States New Hampshire United States presidential New Hampshire 0.06283% 56 89,127 Although the 0.38% victory margin for President Woodrow Wilson in California — which gave Wilson the thirteen electoral votes he needed to win reelection over Republican Charles Evans Hughes—garnered most of the attention, Wilson’s surprise 56-vote victory over Hughes in New Hampshire (the only Northeastern state that Hughes did not carry) was the closest contest in the election.[325]
2004 United States Ohio Ohio Senate 14th District Republican primary 0.06517% 22 33,760 Jean Schmidt won the first count by 62 votes, but Tom Niehaus prevailed in a recount and went on to win the general election.[310]
1891 Canada Canadian federal Grey South 0.06572% 3 4,565 Liberal incumbent George Landerkin defeated Conservative John Blyth.[300]
2006 Italy Italian general 0.06627% 24,755 38,153,343 The centre-left coalition The Union led by Romano Prodi defeated the centre-right House of Freedoms of incumbent Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.[326]
2017 France French legislative (2nd round) Corrèze's 2nd constituency 0.09972% 23 37,723 Frédérique Meunier of The Republicans (LR) narrowly held onto his seat against ex-Socialist senator Patricia Bordas, invested by La République En Marche! (REM).[327]
1972 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.06690% 30 44,841 New Democrat incumbent Doug Rowland defeated Progressive Conservative Dean Whiteway.[265]
1940 Canada Canadian federal Cumberland 0.06842% 12 17,537 Liberal Percy Chapman Black defeated National Government incumbent Kenneth Judson Cochrane.[328]
2002 United States Colorado Colorado 7th Congressional district 0.06877% 121 175,938 In the first race in this newly created Congressional district, Republican Bob Beauprez narrowly beat out Democrat Mike Feeley.[329]
1952 United States Kentucky United States presidential Kentucky 0.07048% 700 993,148 Dwight Eisenhower was elected president in a landslide, but lost Kentucky by the smallest margin of any state Presidential battle for thirty-six years, giving a sixth straight Democrat win in the Bluegrass State.[330]
2004 United States North Carolina North Carolina State Agriculture Commissioner 0.07066% 2,353 3,330,187 Republican Steve Troxler defeated Democrat Britt Cobb.[citation needed]
2014 United States Arizona Arizona Second Congressional district 0.07334% 161 219,351 Martha McSally defeated Ron Barber, officially announced a month after the election, after a legally-mandated recount.[331] McSally had lost to Barber in 2012 by 2,454 votes.
2016 United States Pennsylvania Pennsylvania PA-31 0.07381% 28 37,936 Democrat Perry Warren defeated Republican Ryan Gallagher for District 31 of the PA House of Representatives.[332]
2017 France French legislative (2nd round) Mayotte's 1st constituency 0.07538% 12 15,920 (initial) Elad Chakrina of The Republicans (LR) was initially declared the winner by 12 votes after the publication of results. However, the result was overturned after it was determined that a counting error had cost Socialist Party (PS) candidate Ramlati Ali of victory, winning by 54 votes in the updated count.[333] A by-election was called after the constitutional council invalidated the election due to irregularities.[334]
2000 Canada Canadian federal Laval Centre 0.07667% 42 54,782 Bloc Québécois MP Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral narrowly edged out Liberal Pierre Lafleur.[305]
2013 United States New Jersey New Jersey General Assembly District 2 0.07954% 40 50,288 Democrat Vince Mazzeo defeated incumbent Republican John F. Amodeo after a recount.[335]
1988 Canada Canadian federal York North 0.08767% 77 87,825 Liberal Maurizio Bevilacqua narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Michael O'Brien.[282]
1880 United States California United States presidential California 0.08769% 144 164,218 Democrat Winfield Scott Hancock takes advantage of opposition to Chinese immigration for the first Democratic win in California since 1856, but loses the electoral vote despite equalling Garfield in states won and popular vote.[336]
1908 United States Missouri United States presidential Missouri 0.08786% 629 715,927 William Howard Taft wins a comfortable first term but takes Missouri by fewer than a thousand votes.[337]
1984 Canada Canadian federal Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke 0.08792% 38 43,219 Liberal MP Len Hopkins narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Don Whillans.[338]
2005 United Kingdom UK general Crawley 0.08815% 37 41,973 Labour MP Laura Moffatt retains seat.
2012 France French legislative Eure second constituency 0.08928% 39 43,681 Socialist Jean-Louis Destans defeated incumbent Jean-Pierre Nicolas[339]
2000 United States Washington (state) Washington United States Senate 0.09055% 2,229 2,461,379 Democrat Maria Cantwell unseats Republican Slade Gorton following a mandatory recount.[citation needed]
1998 United States Nevada Nevada United States Senate 0.09200% 401 435,864 Incumbent Democrat Harry Reid defeats Republican John Ensign.[340]
1965 Canada Canadian federal Shefford 0.09334% 27 28,926 Liberal Louis-Paul Neveu defeated Progressive Conservative Paul-O. Trépanier.[341]
1860 United States Virginia United States presidential Virginia 0.09347% 156 166,891 Constitutional Union candidate John Bell edges out secessionist John Cabell Breckinridge. President-elect Lincoln received only 1,887 votes.[342]
1874 Canada Canadian federal Leeds South 0.09372% 3 3,201 Conservative David Ford Jones beat challenger W. H. Fredenburgh.[343]
1962 Canada Canadian federal St. John's West 0.09391% 24 25,557 Liberal Richard Cashin defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent William Joseph Browne.[344]
2016 Taiwan Taiwanese general Taoyuan legislative district 4 0.09385% 162 172,622 KMT incumbent Yang Li-Huan claimed edged DDP challenger Cheng Pao-Ching by 30 votes, when latter Central Election Commission said Cheng won with 169 votes. The recount in 5 days saw Cheng won by 162 votes.[345]
1884 United States New York (state) United States presidential New York 0.09844% 1,149 1,167,169 Democrat Grover Cleveland edged out Mainer James G. Blaine to win New York’s decisive 36 electoral votes.[citation needed]
1878 Canada Canadian federal Jacques Cartier 0.09911% 2 2,018 Conservative Désiré Girouard defeated Liberal incumbent Rodolphe Laflamme.[346]
1921 Canada Canadian federal Calgary West 0.09955% 16 16,073 Labour Joseph Tweed Shaw defeated Conservative R. B. Bennett who was, at the time, Minister of Justice.[347]
2017 France French legislative (2nd round) Loire's 1st constituency 0.09972% 23 23,065 Régis Juanico of the Socialist Party (PS), a supporter of Benoît Hamon, held onto his seat narrowly against Magalie Viallon, candidate of La République En Marche! (REM).[327]
2016 United States United States House of Representatives, 2016, Arizona Republican Primary. 5th Congressional District 0.000315% 27 85,595 On the night of the Republican Primary for the seat being vacated by Congressman Matt Salmon, State Senator Andy Biggs lead by a total of 16 votes against Republican challenger, Christine Jones. After a recount that lead widened to 27 votes, and Jones conceded the election.[348]
2018 United States/Maryland Democratic Primary for Baltimore County Executive Baltimore County 0.0000972% 9 27,804 A three way race between Vicki Almond, Jim Brochin and Johnny Olszewski Jr. ended initially with Olszewski leading by around 400 votes on election night. But after provisional ballots were counted and an error by the Maryland department of motor vehicles was discovered, the lead was reduced to 9 votes for Olszewski.[349]
2013 Australia Australian Federal Western Australia Senate 0.000000741% 1 1,348,797 The Australian senate is elected by a series of complex preference deals/ At one point the next party to be eliminated was between the Shooters and Fishers Party and the Australian Christians. The margin was effectively one vote at that point in the count, and depending on which party was ahead either the Labor Party and PUP or the Sports Party and the Greens would have been elected.

As the recount was taking place it became apparent that there were some missing ballots, which was greater than the margin, so the election was voided and a re-run was conducted in 2014.[350]

2016 United States / Arizona Maricopa County Recorder Republican Primary Maricopa County 0.000651% 202 310,169 Incumbent Helen Purcell defeated Aaron Flannery for Maricopa County Recorder. Purcell faced significant controversy following Arizona's 2016 presidential primary in which voters faced long wait times to vote due to a significant reduction in polling places from several hundred to 60. Purcell was soundly defeated in the following General Election. [351]
2009 Canada / Quebec Leadership Election Action démocratique du Québec leadership election, 2009 (Second ballot) 0.0511% 2 3,912 After longtime leader Mario Dumont stepped down from the leadership of the party, an election was held. In a very close race, Gilles Taillon defeated his opponent Éric Caire, by just 2 votes.[352]

Distribution of elections by winning margin[edit]

Close elections not only demonstrate the effect of individual voters, they may reflect extra efforts from candidates or supporters when elections are close.[353][354]

Election Contests, by Winning Margin
Geographic Area Dates Includes Towns? Number of Election Contests Number of Ties Number Won by 1 Vote Percent of Elections where Winning Margin Was up to 0.1% Up to 0.2% Up to 0.5% Up to 1% Up to 2% Up to 5% Up to 90% Sources
Colorado 2017 yes 511 7 3 1.8% 2.2% 3.9% 5.3% 7.2% 16.4% 99.0% CO SoS
Massachusetts 2014-17 most 456 0 0 0.2% 0.2% 1.5% 2.4% 4.8% 10.7% 98.7% MA SoS
West Virginia 2014-17 few 879 0 2 0.6% 1.0% 3.0% 4.4% 8.8% 21.3% 100.0% WV SoS

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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