SEATTLE The race for Seattle City Council Position 2 could be over.
New election numbers released Thursday night showed socialist Kshama Sawant widening her lead over longtime Seattle City Council member Richard Conlin with 1,148 votes.
Sawant had 50.17% with 86,223 votes while Conlin had 49.50% with 85,075.
Even in left-leaning Seattle, where police recently made headlines for handing out snacks at a large marijuana festival and politicians often try to out-liberal each other, the fact that 41-year-old Sawant has taken the lead in a City Council race has surprised many people.
Sawant has backed efforts to raise the minimum wage to $15, favors rent control and supports a tax on millionaires to fund city needs.
There will be an automatic recount if the final margin is less than a half a percent. Given Washington state's mail-in voting system, a definitive winner won't be named for days or even weeks.