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He graduated from Virginia Tech in 1984 and from the Washington and Lee University School of Law three years later, according to his official legislative biography. Mr. Obenshain then co-founded a law firm before becoming involved in state politics.

He and Mr. Herring are competing for the seat being vacated by Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, a Republican who lost in his bid for governor.

Some Republican strategists and supporters have touted Mr. Obenshain as a possible candidate for governor in 2017. But Mr. Obenshain instead is hoping for a term as the state’s top law enforcement official.

“In my ten years in the Senate, I have worked for lower taxes, safer communities and a more limited government,” Mr. Obenshain wrote in a campaign email Wednesday morning. “As your next Attorney General, I will continue to fight to make sure that Virginia is a beacon of freedom and opportunity.”

He encouraged supporters to remain optimistic despite the recount.

“We have long hours ahead of us, but I shall always be immensely grateful for your support,” Mr. Obenshain wrote. “We ran a campaign based on a positive plan to solve problems in Virginia, and I’m proud of that.”