Each ballot counts, but that process is taking a little longer this election cycle.
Many voters opted to mail in their choices for political office, and in New York, it was easier than ever to do so. A collective allowance was made for anyone uncomfortable voting in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I voted absentee for instance, and it's the first time I've done that in 40 years. So there's just a lot more absentee ballots. That's the first thing. So if there's a little bit of a differential, it could really swing a race," said Grant Reeher, director of Campbell Public Affairs Institute at Syracuse University.
In a typical election year, mail-in ballots will mostly mirror the results of in-person votes. But that doesn't appear to be the case in 2020. Reeher said Democratic candidates have been encouraging supporters to vote early, or by absentee, while Republican candidates have encouraged Election Day votes, impacting races statewide.
"You have a different type of dynamic. You have first of all a big chunk of votes coming in late. And then second of all a big chunk of votes coming in late that you have good reason to think are going to break much more for the Democratic candidate than for the Republican candidate," said Reeher.
Reeher also said Republicans have come to vote in numbers higher than expected, which has made for some interesting local races. In the 24th Congressional District, he said the race was predicted to be a toss up, but incumbent Republican John Katko currently leads by more than 50,000 votes.
"In order to make up the distance she has right now, Dana Balter will have to have just an overwhelming majority of those absentee ballots. John Katko has a pretty healthy lead there and I think basically he's all but won that seat," Reeher said.
Balter releasing this statement Wednesday afternoon saying "With over 70,000 absentee ballots yet to be counted in our race — and more still being returned — our campaign will not be commenting on the outcome until the election staff have had appropriate time to tally all the votes."
"They're not even going to start counting the absentees until next week, November 9, which is my birthday, which is a good omen, so we'll see. We'll see what happens," said Rep. Katko.
Reeher said in the 22nd Congressional District, the race is a bit tighter.
"Claudia Tenney is probably in pretty good shape. She's not in the same shape that John Katko is in, but she looks like she's in pretty good shape. That one will have to involve certainly close counting of the absentee votes and perhaps and probably a recount," said Reeher.
Tenney is feeling confident about her chances with the absentee ballots.
"Looks like my opponent would have to come up with about 85 percent of those or more, which is unlikely, but we're going to fight right to the minute, the last minute," said Tenney.
"Two years ago, we did not know who won until nearly Thanksgiving and given the number of ballots outstanding, we are ready to wait for the results to come in," said Anthony Brindisi.