Hogansville one-vote margin recount eligible but unlikely

Published 7:16 pm Wednesday, November 8, 2023

With the Post 5 council race in Hogansville between Kandis Strickland and Jason Baswell decided by only one vote, many might be wondering if a recount is in the future.

Strickland defeated Baswell by one vote on Tuesday, earning 204 votes compared to Baswell’s 203 votes. Due to the margin of victory, election rules would allow a recount, but ultimately it’s up to Baswell to request it.

Hogansville City Manager Lisa Kelly explained that the city’s charter is pretty simple on the matter. Section 4.03 Election by Plurality defines the winner in city elections.

“It simply says, it’s a one sentence, ‘The person receiving a plurality of the votes cast for any city office shall be elected.’ So in this case, that one vote made the difference and it won the seat by one vote,” Kelly said.

With the results so close, the vote is eligible for a recount, but it would have to be requested by the losing candidate.

Elections Supervisor Andy Harper said that under state law, recounts are only allowed if someone wins by a margin less than one-half of one percent of the vote, but they aren’t automatic and must be requested by a candidate.

Strickland only received 50.12% of the vote so it is eligible for a recount.

The recount request must be made within two business days of the results being certified. Harper said the results are expected to be certified on Monday afternoon.

Baswell said he plans to speak with election officials to make sure everything was counted correctly but he does not expect to ask for a recount. He said he trust the results and doesn’t want to hold anyone back, wishing Strickland well.

“I’ve never seen this. This is the closest spread I’ve ever seen. I’ve seen it pretty close before but not like this. It’s pretty amazing,” Kelly said. “This is a true depiction of what it means that every vote counts.”