Vernon Parker Wouldn't Need a Miracle to Defeat Kyrsten Sinema

Despite the fact that some folks from out of town are calling the congressional race in CD-9 for Democrat Kyrsten Sinema, it's certainly not over, and Republican Vernon Parker wouldn't need a miracle to win.

While Sinema's up by several thousand votes at the moment, there are thousands more to count, between provisional ballots and early-voting ballots dropped off at polls.

See also:
-Ann Kirkpatrick Called Winner in CD-1; Kyrsten Sinema and Martha McSally Sit on Leads
-Arizona's Congressional Elections: Good, Bad, and Ugly
-Kyrsten Sinema, Vernon Parker and Why Top-Two Was and Is a Dumb Idea
-Can Kyrsten Sinema Win in Congressional District 9?

It's been said that attorneys for both sides are getting involved, and based on some estimates we can make, this race could come down to the last handful of ballots tabulated.

All of CD-9 is within Maricopa County, so that makes it a bit easier to guesstimate how many votes remain uncounted in the race.

While analyzing the chances of Sheriff Joe Arpaio-challenger Paul Penzone and Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Richard Carmona still have to win their races, our colleague Stephen Lemons calculates that 1,347,519 voters turned out county-wide in this election. That would equate to a voter turnout of 73 percent -- consistent with Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell's estimate, which was between 70 and 75 percent.

Assuming that CD-9 voters turned out in a similar number to the rest of the county, we can guess that around 256,049 of CD-9's 350,330 voters actually cast ballots in the Parker/Sinema race.

Since 169,753 votes have already been tabulated in the race, we can estimate that about 86,296 votes remain to be counted, between provisional ballots and early-voting ballots that ended up being a bit late.

Long story short: Sinema's current lead is 2,715 votes, and it's possible that about 86,000 more votes are waiting to be counted.

Now, if our estimate of county-wide turnout, our assumption about district turnout, and one additional assumption -- that third-party candidates will continue to get about 6 percent of the vote -- are similar to the actual result, then the scenario Parker needs to win isn't incredibly unlikely.

If Parker lands 49 percent of the estimated remaining votes, and Sinema gets 45 percent, Parker would win by an estimated 737 votes.

If just 1 percentage point were to go the other way -- Parker getting 48 percent, and Sinema getting 46 percent -- Sinema would win by an estimated 989 votes.

Again, this isn't a fact. This is an example of how close this race could be, and how things could go, if certain things held true. And if you bet us a dollar that these numbers are going to be off, you'd have an extra dollar in the coming days.

Or, you can sit back, relax, and wait for the actual results.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley