Gov. Phil Murphy just barely was able to survive a challenge from Republican challenger Jack Ciattarelli in New Jersey's gubernatorial election, as he is projected to win according to NBC News and AP projections, but by a razor thin margin that will likely be challenged in some form.
A recount is possible, and after that courts could potentially get involved, depending on how narrow Murphy's margin of victory ends up being. It is not known if Ciattarelli will launch any effort to dispute the results, but as of Wednesday night, he had not conceded the race.
Any legal challenges must be done before the results of the election are certified, which makes the numbers official and the race over. So what happens before the election results can be certified?
Here's a quick breakdown:
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The Monday after the election (six days) is the deadline for mail-in ballots to be received by each county's board of election. The mail-in ballot must have been postmarked by or before 8 p.m. on Nov. 2, which is when polls closed in the state.
The County Board of Canvassers for the general election meets, 13 days after the election.
Each county clerk must send in the official results for their county to the Secretary of State no more than five days after the meeting for the County Board of Canvassers.
The Board of State Canvassers for the election meets to certify the election, on or before the 30th day following the election.