Decision 2020

Recount Begins in Narrow Florida State Senate District 37 Race

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The recount of the narrow Florida State Senate District 37 race began Tuesday and will continue into Wednesday, with just a few dozen votes separating the two candidates.

Democrat Jose Javier Rodriguez has held the seat, which stretches from Miami to Key Biscayne to Cutler Bay, since 2016.

But now he's facing tough competition from Republican Ileana Garcia.

As of Tuesday, 31 votes separated the candidates out of more than 200,000 cast. A machine recount was underway and a manual recount will like take place Thursday.

“We will retrieve all ballots for the district, we will read them through the tabulators again and attribute votes to either one of those candidates, if we find that there are additional votes," Miami-Dade Elections Supervisor Christina White said.

Miami-Dade Republican Party Chairman Nelson Diaz said he was not surprised.

"We thought it would be close, not this close, but we thought it would be close and we did expect a successful night there,” said Diaz.

Democrats are counting on Rodriguez to keep his seat, as they try and chip away at the GOP majority in the Senate.

“The senator has enjoyed great support, he has represented this area for nearly a decade,” said Rodriguez campaign spokesman Christian Ulvert. "We know that when the votes are tallied he will be on the upside, and the voters are going to send him back to Tallahassee."

Republicans hold a majority in the Senate, 23 seats to the Democrats 16, with one of the parties adding one to their column after the recount.

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