ABC News’ Karen Travers Reports: Today Democrat Paul Carmouche conceded the congressional race in Louisiana’s 4th district to Republican Paul Fleming. The LA Secretary of State certified the results on Wednesday and Carmouche decided not to request a recount.
Carmouche and Fleming squared off last Saturday to replace retiring Republican Jim McCrery. Fleming eeked out a 350-vote win on a day of very low turnout.
"Of more than 92,000 votes cast throughout the 13 parishes of this district, it appears that our campaign has fallen slightly short. I will not ask for a recount of any of the paper ballots, and I offer my warmest congratulations to Dr. Fleming," Carmouche said in a paper statement.
There will be a recount next week in Virginia’s 5th congressional district where Democratic challenger Tom Perriello defeated Republican Rep. Virgil Goode. Goode requested the recount. Because Perriello won by a slim 745 vote margin (0.24 percent of all votes), the Dec 16-17 recount will be paid for by the Virginia taxpayers
Both Democrats and Republicans say that Goode cannot make up the difference in the recount and Perriello’s victory will hold.
When the new Congress is sworn in next month Democrats would have a 79 seat advantage (257-178). Democrats will have a net gain of 21 seats in the House – they flipped 26 Republican-held seats while the Republicans flipped 5 Democrat-held seats.
One bright spot for Republicans? Special elections for members leaving for the Obama Administration in January could provide an opportunity to cut into the Democrats’ advantage in the House.
There will be at least one special election to replace a Member of Congress leaving for the Obama Administration — Rep. Rahm Emanuel from Illinois’ 5th District, who will serve as Obama’s Chief of Staff. Emanuel has not officially resigned his House seat.
There could be another potential vacancy in California’s 31st District if Rep. Xavier Becerra accepts the job of U.S. Trade Representative in the Obama Adminstration. Becerra, who has served in Congress since 1993, was just elected vice chair of the House Democratic Caucus and has not indiciated he would take the Administration position.