Democrat Mark Begich now leads Sen. Ted Stevens (R) by just over 1,000 votes with more than 90 percent of the total ballots now counted in the high-profile Alaska Senate race.
The Alaska Division of Elections counted another 14,500 votes on Friday and Begich's lead increased from 841 before the day started to 1,022 when the counting ended.
That means that Begich has gained more than 4,200 votes on Stevens since the 90,000 early, absentee and questioned ballots began to be counted on Wednesday. There are roughly 24,000 votes left to be counted, and the counting will resume, and presumably conclude, early next week, according to the Begich campaign.
Of the remaining votes, roughly 15,000 are in the Anchorage area (a swing area in the race) and another 8,000 are in the Juneau area, which should be Begich territory.
"The news continues to be positive," Begich said in a statement released by the campaign tonight. "With the gap widening slightly in our favor today, I feel even more optimistic that when all the ballots are counted next week, we'll see Alaskans came out to vote for new leadership in Washington, D.C."
I wonder what Gov. Palin will say if it goes to Begich?