Former Donald Trump campaign staffer Madison Gesiotto Gilbert ran against state Rep. Emilia Sykes in Ohio's 13th Congressional District.
The 13th District encompasses Akron, the 5th largest city in the state and Sykes' hometown.
Sykes' father, state Sen. Vernon Sykes, participated in redrawing the congressional lines.
Democratic Ohio State Rep. Emilia Sykes defeated former Donald Trump campaign staffer Madison Gesiotto Gilbert for Ohio's 13th Congressional District.
The district is currently represented by Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan, who is running for US Senate.
Polls closed in the state at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
Ohio's 13th Congressional District candidates
Gesiotto, an attorney and former Miss Ohio USA, scored Trump's endorsement earlier this year in her bid for Congress.
"In Congress, Madison will strongly fight for Border Security, to Protect Life, Election Integrity, Defend the Second Amendment, and Support our Military, Vets, and Law Enforcement," according to the endorsement posted on her Twitter. "Madison Gesiotto Gilbert is an America First patriot, and has my Complete and Total Endorsement!"
Gilbert came out on top in a crowded, seven-way GOP primary to win the Republican nomination.
Sykes, Gilbert's challenger, represented Ohio's 34th District in the Ohio House of Representatives. The seat has been held by a Sykes for nearly 40 years; Sykes' father Vernon Sykes, now a state senator, and mother Barbara Sykes, has alternated holding the seat since 1983.
Sykes won the race for the 34th Ohio State House District seat in 2014, succeeding her father.
In 2022, she ran unopposed in her Democratic congressional primary.
Abortion is front and center in Ohio's 13th: Sykes said Gilbert, who has voiced her opposition to abortion, is someone "who thinks that women should sacrifice their lives."
Voting history for Ohio's 13th Congressional District
Ohio's 13th Congressional District encompasses Akron, the fifth largest city in the state.
President Joe Biden had a 3-percentage-point margin of victory under the district's previous boundaries in 2020 before it was redrawn to include Summit County, northern Stark County and a sliver of Portage County in redistricting following the 2020 Census, giving Republicans a slight edge.
State Sen. Vernon Sykes, Rep. Emilia Sykes' father, sat on the seven-member commission that drafted the new congressional map.
The money race
According to OpenSecrets, Gilbert has raised $1.9 million, spent $1.5 million, and has $423,940 of cash on hand, as of October 19. Her opponent, Sykes, has raised $2.1 million, spent $1.7 million, and has $468,847 of cash still left to spend, as of October 19.
Through early November, super PACs, national party committees, and other non-candidate groups have combined to spend nearly $16 million advocating for or against the two candidates.
Republican-backing super PAC Congressional Leadership Fund and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee account for the most outside spending.
What experts say
The race between Gilbert and Sykes was rated as a "toss-up" by Inside Elections, a "toss-up" by The Cook Political Report, and a "toss-up" by Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics. However, Sykes came out on top with a little over 52 percent of the vote.
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