Coin toss may decide Florida election


Long lines, late results and a reputation for narrow margins of victory — there’s no place like Florida during election season.

With the high-profile governor’s race safely in the books, it seems as though the state escaped major election controversies. That would be true, unless you live in Mount Dora, where a local election could soon be decided by a coin toss.

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Yes, a coin toss.

According to election results, as of 1 p.m. Monday, a race for a city council seat was tied.

Nick Girone, the incumbent, received 2,349 votes. So did his challenger, Marie Rich. City council seats are considered nonpartisan.

What happens next is anyone’s guess. More than a dozen ballots are still unaccounted for.

“Right now it’s a tie,” Joyce Martin, chief deputy of the Lake County Supervisor of Elections office, told “It’s up to the city of Mount Dora and we don’t know what they’ll do.”

Each of Lake County’s 14 cities is responsible for conducting its own elections. Mount Dora’s city charter calls for a runoff election if a winning candidate receives less than a majority of the total vote.

But with Girone and Rich both sitting at 50 percent each, a single vote could clear a majority. If not, Florida law calls for a coin toss or the drawing of straws to break the stalemate.



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