The May 7 primary election results have withstood a recount after a tight Democratic primary race for Akron City Council.
First-time council candidate Ginger Baylor, who serves on the Akron Board of Education, held her narrow lead over Ward 8 Councilwoman Marilyn Keith, who abandoned her ward-level incumbency to run for one of three at-large seats up for grabs every four years.
In a six-way race, less than a half-percent of the contested vote total separated the two candidates. That triggered an automatic recount. The Summit County Board of Elections randomly selected about 10 precincts to recount by hand. The review was compared to the results certified shortly after the election.
“Those matched perfectly,” said Bill Rich, who chairs the board of elections. “Then we did a machine recount for all the rest of the precincts. And the results were very close to the certified results.”
The recount was accepted by the board of elections Tuesday. The official results required by law to be submitted after the election were amended to reflect slight discrepancies of three votes or less for each of the six Democrats seeking nominations. That level of discrepancy equates to greater than 99.9 percent accuracy in the local voting system.
Baylor, who ran on the same ticket with Keith and incumbent At-Large Councilman Jeff Fusco, ended up winning by 28 votes, or less than 0.2 percent of all 14,306 Democratic ballots cast in the race.
Baylor and Fusco will join incumbent Linda Omobien on the Democratic ticket this fall. They will face Republicans Cynthia Blake and Monica McNatt, who finished first and third in their respective GOP primary.
A hearing is scheduled for June 21 to decide whether poll workers misled or, as he alleges, discriminated against second-place finisher Henry Todd. The Republican said he was given a Democratic ballot by default because he’s black. Poll workers from both political parties dispute that version of events.
Because Todd cast a Democratic ballot, which he said he did not fill out, he was registered as a Democrat and immediately disqualified from being nominated as a Republican under state law. It’s up to the Republican state central committee to replace his name on the ballot before the Nov. 5 general election.
Reach Doug Livingston at firstname.lastname@example.org or 330-996-3792.