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%).


Year Country /
Election Race Margin
Total votes
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.[1]
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.[2]
1963 Canada Canadian general Pontiac—Témiscamingue 0% 0 16,587 Progressive Conservative incumbent Paul Martineau defeated Liberal Paul-Oliva Goulet. A deciding vote was cast by the returning officer after the two candidates tied.[3]
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.[4] However, Tullos asked the State House to seat him, and they did so in a largely party-line vote.[5]
2013 Philippines Oriental Mindoro Philippine local San Teodoro, Oriental Mindoro 0% 0 6,472+ The vote was tied, so a coin toss was the agreed upon way to determine the winner. A second round was held after both candidates were still tied in the first round.[6]
1886 United Kingdom UK general Ashton-under-Lyne 0% 0 6,099 The vote was tied, so, under the law of the day, the returning officer was given a casting vote.[7]
1999 Canada Nova Scotia Nova Scotia general Shelburne 0% 0 3,206 Progressive Conservative Cecil O'Donnell defeated Liberal Clifford Huskilson. The deciding vote was cast by the returning officer after the two candidates tied.
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.[8]
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.[9]
2014 France French municipal Lescar 0% 0 2,670 Christian Laine (socialist) tied Philippe Coy. By virtue of French Law, the oldest candidate (Christian Laine) has been elected. The election was canceled by French Court, and Christian Laine finally won by a 71-vote margin.[10]
2011 Switzerland Swiss federal election Ticino 0% 0 23,979 Marco Romano and Monica Duca both had 23,979 votes.[11] On 25 November 2011, lots were then drawn to determine who had won the seat, and Marco Romano was declared the winner.[12]
1968 Australia South Australia South Australian House of Assembly Seat of Millicent 0.01362% 1 7,342 Des Corcoran of the Australian Labor Party beat Martin Cameron of the Liberal and Country League, 3635 votes to 3634.
1974 United States New Hampshire New Hampshire senate 0.00090% 2 223,363 Louis Wyman beat John A. Durkin after several recounts. The US Senate called for a re-vote, which Durkin won.[13]
1984 United States Indiana Indiana state 8th Congressional district 0.00171% 4 233,286 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.[citation needed]
1839 United States Massachusetts Massachusetts gubernatorial 0.00195% 2 102,066 Marcus Morton won the governorship by two votes.[citation needed]
2003 Russia Sverdlovsk Oblast Russian legislative Sverdlovsk Oblast District 163 0.00221% 5 225,484 Incumbent Georgy Leontyev held the seat by five votes,[14] despite allegations of vote manipulations, later rejected by the Supreme Court [15]
1997 United Kingdom UK general Winchester 0.00322% 2 62,054 Mark Oaten gained the seat from the Conservatives (the result was later annulled and Oaten won by 21,000 votes in the subsequent by-election). This was the smallest percentage majority and the joint smallest numerical majority, in a UK Parliamentary election, since universal adult suffrage.
2004 United States Washington (state) Washington gubernatorial 0.00473% 133 2,810,058 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).[16]
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.[17]
2010 United Kingdom UK general Fermanagh and South Tyrone 0.00855% 4 46,803 Michelle Gildernew (Sinn Féin) defeated independent Rodney Connor.[18]
1948 United States Texas Texas senate 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.
1972 Canada Ontario Canadian federal Ontario 0.00949% 4 42,150 Liberal incumbent Norman Cafik defeated Progressive Conservative Frank Charles McGee.[19]
2008 United States Alaska Alaska District 7 0.00997%[20] 1[20] 10,035[20] Incumbent Republican Mike Kelly defeated Democratic challenger Karl Kassel by one vote following a recount.[21]
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.[22]
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.[23]
2008 United States Minnesota United States Senate, Minnesota 0.0108% 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.[24] 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.[25]
1994 United States Connecticut Connecticut Second Congressional district 0.01129% 21 186,071 After two recounts, Sam Gejdenson had 21 more votes than Edward Munster.[citation needed]
2002 Germany German federal 0.01256%[26] 6,027 47,996,480 valid
(in a total of 48,582,761)
1968 Canada Canadian federal Leeds 0.01376% 4 29,073 Progressive Conservative Desmond Code defeated Liberal incumbent John Matheson.[27]
2009 Canada British Columbia British Columbia general Delta South 0.1363% 32 23,477 Independent candidate Vicky Huntington defeats Attorney General Wally Oppal, running for the first time in Delta South in a recount called after Oppal was leading by 2 votes in the initial count.[28]
1930 Canada Canadian federal Yamaska 0.01427% 1 7,009 Liberal incumbent Aimé Boucher defeated Conservative Paul-François Comtois.[29] The riding result was later declared void, and Boucher won the by-election in 1933 by 84 votes (0.1%).
1949 Canada Canadian federal Annapolis—Kings 0.01515% 4 26,400 Liberal Angus Alexander Elderkin defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent George Nowlan.[30]
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.[31]
1988 Canada Canadian federal London—Middlesex 0.01654% 8 48,358 Progressive Conservative MP Terry Clifford narrowly edged out Liberal Garnet Bloomfield.[32]
2005 United States Virginia Virginia Attorney General 0.01662% 323 1,943,250 Bob McDonnell was certified as the victor over Creigh Deeds following a recount.[33]
2012 Australia Australian Capital Territory ACT general 0.0185% 41 221,172 The Canberra Liberal Party received more first preference votes than the ruling Labor Party.[34] Ultimately the Labor Party formed a minority government with the support of the sole ACT Greens MLA.
2006 United States Oklahoma Oklahoma state 0.020846% 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.[35][36][37]
1935 Canada Canadian federal Vancouver—Burrard 0.02133% 6 28,130 Liberal Gerald Grattan McGeer defeated Co-operative Commonwealth Arnold Alexander Webster.[38]
1896 Canada Canadian federal Ontario North 0.02148% 1 4,655 Liberal-Conservative John Alexander McGillivray defeated Patrons of Industry Duncan Graham.[9]
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. It was subsequently reported that Allason lost the seat through failing to leave a tip when dining at a restaurant in his constituency shortly before polling day. It was estimated that 14 voters (restaurant staff and their close family members) switched allegiance from Allason to other candidates as a result. He lost by 12 votes.
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.[39]
1900 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.02303% 1 4,343 Liberal William Forsythe McCreary defeated Conservative John Herber Haslam.[40] 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.[40]
2010 United States Illinois Illinois gubernatorial Republican primary 0.02515% 193 767,485 Bill Brady defeated Kirk Dillard.[41][42]
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.[43]
1930 Canada Canadian federal Norfolk—Elgin 0.02654% 5 18,843 Liberal William H. Taylor defeated Conservative John Lawrence Stansell.[29]
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.[44][45]
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.[46] 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.[47]
1891 Canada Canadian federal Wentworth South 0.02821% 1 3,545 Conservative Franklin Carpenter defeated Liberal James T. Russell.[48]
1935 Canada Canadian federal Souris 0.02833% 3 10,589 Liberal-Progressive George William McDonald defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent Errick French Willis.[38]
1887 Canada Canadian federal Haldimand 0.02865% 1 3,491 Conservative Walter Humphries Montague defeated Liberal incumbent Charles Wesley Colter.[8]
1896 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.02920% 1 3,425 Liberal John Alexander MacDonell defeated Conservative Hugh Armstrong.[9]
2011 Scotland Scottish general Glasgow Anniesland 0.02927% 7 23,918 Incumbent Labour MSP Bill Butler was defeated by Bill Kidd of the Scottish National Party (SNP).[49]
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.[50][51]
2010 Canada Kitchener City Council 0.02961% 1 3,377 Frank Etherington defeated Debbie Chapman.[52]
1968 Canada Canadian federal Comox—Alberni 0.02967% 9 30,331 Liberal Richard Durante defeated New Democrat incumbent Thomas Speakman Barnett.[27] The riding result was later declared void and Durante lost the by-election to Barnett in 1969.
2013 Australia Australian federal Division of Fairfax 0.03% 53 84,607 Clive Palmer (Palmer United Party) defeated Ted O'Brien of the Liberal National Party of Queensland following two recounts.[53]
1891 Canada Canadian federal Nicolet 0.03016% 1 3,316 Liberal Joseph Hector Leduc defeated Conservative E. C. Prince.[48]
1945 Canada Canadian federal Colchester—Hants 0.03273% 8 24,439 Progressive Conservative Frank Stanfield defeated Liberal incumbent Gordon Timlin Purdy.[54]
1968 Canada Canadian federal Oshawa—Whitby 0.03309% 15 45,332 New Democrat Ed Broadbent defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent Michael Starr.[27]
2000 Canada Canadian federal Champlain 0.03325% 15 45,111 Bloc Québécois candidate Marcel Gagnon narrowly edged out Liberal Julie Boulet.[55]
1993 Canada Canadian federal Edmonton Northwest 0.03410% 12 35,195 Liberal candidate Anne McLellan narrowly edged out Reform candidate Richard Kayler.[56]
1974 Canada Canadian federal Drummond 0.03521% 13 36,925 Liberal Yvon Pinard defeated Social Credit incumbent Jean-Marie Boisvert.[57]
1964 United States Nevada United States Senate, Nevada 0.03565% 48 134,624 Democratic incumbent Howard Cannon defeated Republican Paul Laxalt.[58]
1979 Canada Canadian federal Halifax 0.03662% 15 40,961 Progressive Conservative George Cooper defeated Liberal Brian Flemming.[59]
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".[60]
1896 Canada Canadian federal York East 0.03841% 1 3,425 Independent Conservative incumbent William F. McLean defeated Liberal Henry R. Frankland.[9]
2013 United States Virginia Virginia Attorney General 0.04097% 907 2,214,075 Democratic candidate Mark Herring defeated Republican candidate Mark Obenshain after a recount.
2011 Canada Canadian federal Nipissing—Timiskaming 0.04258% 18 42,271 Conservative Jay Aspin defeated Liberal incumbent Anthony Rota.[61]
2004 United States Montana Montana house District 12 0.04735% 2 4,224 Democrat Jeanne Windham defeated Constitution Party candidate Rick Jore.[citation needed]
2008 Canada Canadian federal Vancouver South 0.04779% 20 41,852 Liberal Ujjal Dosanjh defeated Conservative Wai Young after two recounts.[62]
1887 Canada Canadian federal Montmorency 0.05328% 1 1,877 Liberal Charles Langelier defeated Conservative P. V. Valin.[8]
1959 Singapore Sinaporean 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.[63]
1892 United States California United States presidential California 0.0545234% 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.[64]
2010 United States Ohio Ohio Lakeview Local Schools tax levy 0.05602% 2 3,570 The tax levy passed by two votes.[65]
2006 Canada Canadian federal Parry Sound—Muskoka 0.06064% 28 46,171 Conservative candidate Tony Clement narrowly edged out Liberal MP Andy Mitchell.[66]
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.[67]
1988 Canada Canadian federal Northumberland, Ontario 0.06190% 28 45,235 Liberal candidate Christine Stewart narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Reg Jewell.[32]
1896 United States Kentucky United States presidential Kentucky 0.0621177% 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.[68]
1960 United States Hawaii United States presidential Hawaii 0.0622614% 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.[69]
1916 United States New Hampshire United States presidential New Hampshire 0.0628317% 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.[70]
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.[60]
1891 Canada Canadian federal Grey South 0.06572% 3 4,565 Liberal incumbent George Landerkin defeated Conservative John Blyth.[48]
2006 Italy Italian general 0.06583% 25,115 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.[71]
1972 Canada Canadian federal Selkirk 0.06690% 30 44,841 New Democrat incumbent Doug Rowland defeated Progressive Conservative Dean Whiteway.[19]
1940 Canada Canadian federal Cumberland 0.06842% 12 17,537 Liberal Percy Chapman Black defeated National Government incumbent Kenneth Judson Cochrane.[72]
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.[73]
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.[74]
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 0.073398% 161 219,351 Martha McSally defeated Ron Barber, officially announced a month after the election, after a legally-mandated recount.[75] McSally had lost to Barber in 2012 by 2,454 votes.
2000 Canada Canadian federal Laval Centre 0.07667% 42 54,782 Bloc Québécois MP Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral narrowly edged out Liberal Pierre Lafleur.[55]
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.[76]
1988 Canada Canadian federal York North 0.08767% 77 87,825 Liberal Maurizio Bevilacqua narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Michael O'Brien.[32]
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.[77]
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.[78]
1984 Canada Canadian federal Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke 0.08792% 38 43,219 Liberal MP Len Hopkins narrowly edged out Progressive Conservative Don Whillans.[79]
2014 Australia South Australia Parliament of South Australia Fisher state by-election 0.088% 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.
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[80]
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]
1965 Canada Canadian federal Shefford 0.09334% 27 28,926 Liberal Louis-Paul Neveu defeated Progressive Conservative Paul-O. Trépanier.[81]
1874 Canada Canadian federal Leeds South 0.09372% 3 3,201 Conservative David Ford Jones beat challenger W. H. Fredenburgh.[82]
1962 Canada Canadian federal St. John's West 0.09391% 24 25,557 Liberal Richard Cashin defeated Progressive Conservative incumbent William Joseph Browne.[83]
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.[84]
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.[85]
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.[86]
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. Subsequent re-counting closed down the difference to 2 votes, with no effect to the outcome of the election.[87]


Presidential Polls 2016 2016 Presidential Debate Schedule for General Election

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