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Senate race will continue into December

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By Cade Fowler - bio | email

November 5, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -  Saxby Chambliss and challenger Jim Martin will face each other in a run-off election on December second.

Here are the latest vote numbers:

Saxby Chambliss, GOP (i) 1,841,449 - 50 percent
Jim Martin, Dem 1,727,625 - 47 percent
Allen Buckley, Lib 126,328 - 3 percent

What began as a strong lead for incumbent Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss only tightened as election night came and went.

By early Wednesday morning the numbers were very close in the highly contested U.S. Senate race in Georgia where Chambliss had a slight lead over Democratic challenger Jim Martin.

With 96% of Georgia precincts reporting, the latest results released by the Georgia Secretary of State's office has Chambliss with a 49.9% - 46.7% lead over Martin. But the weight of this election is balanced by Libertarian candidate Allen Buckley who received 3.4% of the vote.

 In Georgia, if a candidate does receive the majority of the vote, a runoff election must be held. 

Surrounded by supporters Tuesday night at an election's party in Atlanta, Sen. Chambliss said, "We feel confident because we're fairly certain that there's not enough votes out there to make up the difference even if all the votes broke the other way. But you just don't know. We would just be foolish to say we know for certain this is where we are and nothing is going to change it."

While the race is too close to call, it is also too early. Several early and absentee votes have still not been counted in some Georgia counties including Fulton, Cobb and Gwinnett.