Unofficial returns from the Tuesday runoff election showed Anderson, a state lawmaker and hay farmer from Grovetown, edging Augusta businessman Allen by barely one-half of 1 percent of the total 27,406 votes counted. And dozens of military and overseas absentee ballots could still trickle in and be counted by the end of August because of a judge’s order.
Stakes are high in the 12th District, where four-term Democratic Rep. John Barrow is vulnerable after his district was redrawn last year to remove his home and political base of Savannah. That forced Barrow to move to Augusta and face a more conservative constituency. A four-way primary last month for the GOP nomination to challenge Barrow gave way to a runoff Tuesday between Anderson and Allen.
“We are going to wait until this election is certified and then we will be requesting a recount,” said Scott Paradise, campaign manager for Allen, a construction company CEO who poured $540,000 of his own money into the race. “With the time invested and the financial investment Rick made, I think he’s interested in making sure that this vote was accurate.”