Recount overturns Idaho local election won by coin toss

AP News
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Posted: Dec 19, 2017 5:39 PM

RUPERT, Idaho (AP) — A recount for a local election in southern Idaho has overturned a win that was decided by a coin toss last month.

Dick Galbraith and Glen Loveland ran against each other for a seat on the city council in the small southern city of Heyburn.

Officials said the race ended in a 112-112 vote tie, The Times-News reported .

To select the winner, a coin toss was held in mid-November.

Galbraith lost and then requested a recount as allowed under state election laws.

"I had a nagging feeling that it wasn't right," Galbraith said. "And honestly, I just had too much heartburn over losing to a coin toss."

Minidoka County Sheriff Eric Snarr delivered the bags of ballots to county officials on Monday, and the county clerk showed the bags' contents to candidates before the count began.

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About 45 minutes later, the ballots were sorted with 113 votes for Galbraith and 112 votes for Loveland.

The discrepancy between the original count performed by a machine and the recount by hand could have happened due to voter error with a ballot incorrectly marked, said Tim Hurst, chief deputy for the Idaho Secretary of State.

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Information from: The Times-News, http://www.magicvalley.com