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Control of the Alaska state House could come down to a coin flip

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Think your vote doesn't count? Maybe you should move to this district in Alaska

'I Voted' stickers rest on a ballot box inside a polling location at a home on Nov. 6, 2018 in Modesto, California. A state House race in Alaska could come down to a coin flip. (Alex Edelman/Getty Images)

Despite a recount, control of Alaska's House is too close to call. The election is so close, in fact, that it could come down to a coin toss.

Here's what we know

Even after a recount, election officials in Alaska found that Democrat Kathryn Dodge and Republican Bart LeBon each received 2,661 votes. A potentially tiebreaking ballot that could have thrown the race to Dodge was determined on Friday to be illegitimate; a mistake that someone had sent in an additional corrected ballot to fix.

According to the state elections office as reported by the New York Times, a woman had requested a special needs ballot for her husband. She came back later to say that her husband had made a mistake and that she needed a new ballot. She gave the old ballot to election officials to be disposed of, but somehow it was added to a collection of ballots that were in question instead. On Friday, election officials discovered the mistake and threw away the ballot.

Candidates have five days to challenge the results. If neither does, the race will be decided "by lot," according to Alaska late elections office spokeswoman Samantha Miller. "It could be a coin toss or some other way of deciding, as long as it's random."

Republicans in Alaska currently control the state Senate, and the governorship.

If either candidate does file a challenge, the race could be undecided until early January.

What else?

In 2017, party control of the Virginia state House was also decided by lot. Republican David Yancey and Democrat Shelly Simonds each garnered 11,607 votes. Republicans already had 50 seats in the state House compared to 49 for Democrats, so this seat could have ended with an even split between both parties. The names of both candidates were film canisters, which were placed in a bowl. One of these canisters was selected, and Yancey was declared to have won the race giving Republicans a 51-49 majority.

Another state House race in Alaska was determined by a coin toss in 2006.

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