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Gildersleeve not conceding yet

Jeff Gildersleeve says it would be foolish to give up his bid to be the Republican nominee for Saratoga County Sheriff until all the votes are counted.

Stillwater Republican Michael Zurlo appeared to have a commanding hold on the party’s nomination after Primary Day voting on Tuesday, as he racked up 6,206 votes and Gildersleeve got 5,800 votes, according to the Saratoga County Board of Elections. The lead was enough for Zurlo, 59, of Stillwater, to declare victory late Tuesday night.

Gildersleeve, 56, of Ballston, said his path to victory lies with absentee and affidavit ballots, as well as the recanvassing of votes from Primary Day. “We are not conceding,” he said.

There were 987 absentee ballots issued to Republicans in Saratoga County and a little more than 540 have been received by the Saratoga County Board of Elections. Gildersleeve said his volunteers were effective in getting voters to cast absentee ballots, so he remains hopeful.

If all the absentee ballots are counted, which isn’t likely, more than 87 percent would have to break for Gildersleeve in order for him to overcome his current deficit of 406 votes.

In most elections, though, where absentee ballots are counted, a sizable percentage of absentee ballots are not valid and aren't counted. If the pool of valid absentee votes shrinks, so do Gildersleeve's chances.

The odds Zurlo losing his lead are extremely low, as absentee and affidavit ballots tend to reflect the results from the day of the election. Based on those trends, it is more likely that Zurlo will expand his lead over Gildersleeve.

Follow @poozer87 on Twitter.

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