State Board of Elections postpones lot draw to determine winner of House race

RICHMOND, Va. -- A dramatic race for a seat in Virginia's House of Delegates took another turn Tuesday as the Virginia State Board of Elections postponed a lot draw to determine winner of a House of Delegates race.

Democratic candidate Shelly Simonds and Republican Del. David Yancey were scheduled to put their names into a bowl. The first name drawn from the bowl would be declared the winner.

The postponement comes after lawyers representing Simonds filed a motion asking the board to delay the lot draw.

They also asked a trio of circuit court judges to reconsider their decision to allow a controversial ballot to be counted as a vote cast for her Republican opponent David Yancey.

That decision turned the race, which a recount panel had declared a one-vote victory for Simonds, into a tie.

Shelly Simonds and David Yancey

Simonds' campaign argued that there is a 21-day window to request that the court reconsider its decision. They believe that given more time to make their argument, they can convince the judges that the ballot in question should not have been counted.

Simonds said this legal challenge was necessary to protect the integrity of Virginia's electoral system. Her campaign is not necessarily arguing against the intent of the ballot in question, but instead that it was too late in the process to offer up this challenge.

Copy of the ballot in question

"My opponent made an end run around the clear rules of the recount," Simonds said during a conference call with reporters. "That was a violation of Virginia law and it was a violation of the court order, and it was contrary to State Board of Elections guidance."

The Simonds campaign filed its motion electronically. The court is not open on Tuesday because of the holiday, so the earliest the motion can be accepted is Wednesday.