The Latest: Sinema pads narrow lead in tight Senate race

PHOENIX (AP) — The Latest on the Senate election in Arizona (all times local):

5:50 p.m.

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema has extended her lead in Arizona’s nail-biter of a U.S. Senate race.

A new batch of votes from the state’s largest county gives her a lead of more than 20,000 votes out of 2 million counted. There are still more than 350,000 ballots statewide remaining to be tallied in the contest against Republican Rep. Martha McSally.

Sinema is also a congresswoman. She has jumped into the lead as traditionally-Republican Maricopa County has tallied up a batch of Democratic-leaning ballots dropped off just before Election Day. McSally’s campaign hopes the remaining votes split more toward her. Ballot counting is expected to run through the end of next week.

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2:45 p.m.

Arizona Republicans and Democrats have agreed to give rural voters an extra chance to fix problems with their ballots in the count of the state’s tight Senate race.

That’s a compromise after Republicans filed a lawsuit seeking to stop urban voters from using those procedures. The settlement was announced in a Phoenix courtroom Friday afternoon.

The counties have until Nov. 14 to address the issue.

The Republican lawsuit alleged that the state’s county recorders don’t follow a uniform standard for allowing voters to address problems with their mail-in ballots, and that Maricopa and Pima counties improperly allow the fixes for up to five days after Election Day.

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema has jumped into a slight lead over Republican Martha McSally in the midst of the slow vote count.

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11:15 p.m.

A judge in Phoenix is set to hear a lawsuit filed by Republican groups seeking to limit the counting of some ballots in urban areas that could swing the results of a key U.S. Senate race.

The Republicans say they would also be happy if the judge ordered every county to try to count those problematic ballots, which some currently don’t do.

Friday’s hearing comes after Democrat Kyrsten Sinema grabbed a slim lead over Republican Martha McSally for the first time since Election Day. More than 400,000 ballots still need to be counted statewide.

Only a few thousand votes would be affected by the suit. Every one of them could be precious to Sinema or McSally in the razor-close race.

Associated Press

Associated Press

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