ALBANY, N.Y. – The results on election night were actually just the beginning for the 46th Senate District, little did voters and the two candidates know, the race would not be decided until two months later.
Ninty ballots were counted at the Ulster County Board of Elections Friday one ballot in Albany County, with a result of Democrat Cecilia Tkaczyk leading the race for the 46th Senate District by 18 votes.
David Lewis, republican George Amedore's lead council, says the ballots counted in Ulster County were their objections to what they saw as deficiencies.
"What we saw, more than anything else, is the ability for democracy to change things. There's always going to be a loser, but it's much more fun to be the winner."
Tkaczyk says it is an incredible privilege to have been elected and now it is time to begin serving her constituents.
"It's gratifying to finally find I am the winner in this very long, grueling campaign," says Tkaczyk.
The race for the 46th Senate District seat was far from clear-cut. Last month, an acting state Supreme Court judge certified Amedore as the winner, but Tkaczyk appealed the decision, resulting in this week's ballot count.
"It was very much a grassroots campaign, because I didn't start off with a lot of money or name recognition," says Tkaczyk. "As more people learned about my positions and my messages, more people got involved. It was really exciting to see the support and how that grew."
Tkaczyk says Amedore called her Friday afternoon to wish her well.
In a statement, Amedore says, ""I am proud of the honest and clean campaign that I and my team ran in this extended race. I was supported by the hard-working upstate families who are faced with tremendous challenges in these trying times. The time for politics has ended and the time to govern is at hand."
Tkaczyk says she expects to be sworn in sometime next week.