With Thousands Of Ballots Not Yet Counted, Underwood Says The Race In The 14th District Is Not Over

Nov 5, 2020

One of the closest races is in Illinois’ 14th Congressional District. Incumbent Democrat Lauren Underwood faces challenger Republican Jim Oberweis.

On Wednesday, the Oberweis campaign issued a statement declaring victory. But in a virtual news conference on Thursday afternoon, Underwood said that the race is not over and that there are thousands of vote-by-mail ballots outstanding.

"We are trying to urge people to remember that these are votes that need to be counted," she said. "As we eagerly await the result of this election, we want to make sure that every vote is counted." 

The congresswoman added that according to county elections officials, McHenry County currently has more than 11,000 vote-by-mail ballots that have not been counted and Lake County has at least 7200.

UPDATE: The Daily Herald reported her campaign spokeswoman said the estimate given for McHenry County was incorrect, but did not say by how much. The newspaper reports Oberweis spokesman Travis Akin disputed Underwood's estimates Friday.

In Illinois, vote-by-mail ballots postmarked by Election Day have two weeks to arrive in the mail and still be counted.

Underwood defeated incumbent Randy Hultgren in 2018 to flip the traditionally Republican seat.

This story was updated to reflect a correction of Rep. Underwood's outstanding vote total estimates.