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Democrats Sherri Lightner and Marti Emerald held on to their leads over the night in the two narrow City Council races remaining.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Lightner’s 32,356 votes (51.85 percent) bested Republican Phil Thalheimer’s 30,053 (48.15 percent) in District 1. Lightner maintained a small lead throughout the night from the early returns.

In District 7, Marti Emerald held on to a razon-thin lead over April Boling, grabbing 22,442 votes (50.8 percent) to Boling’s 21,738 votes (49.2 percent). In that race, Boling jumped out to a small lead after the absentee ballots were counted, but Emerald chipped away at that lead slowly as the returns rolled in from the precincts.

There are some remaining provisional ballots, but if those leads hold, it would represent a Democratic sweep Tuesday night and tip the balance of the City Council to six Democrats and two Republicans.

Stay tuned more updates from the campaigns.

Update: Pollster John Nienstedt estimates there are still 15,000 votes left to be counted in District 7 and has put this election outcome calculator to follow the vote count.

He made a similar effort in the closely contested 2004 mayoral race.

ANDREW DONOHUE

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