Run-Offs Nothing New To Augusta

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December 6, 2005
Tuesday’s runoff is nothing new. This makes three Augusta mayoral races that have ended in a runoff. News 12 takes a look back to see if today’s race will follow the trend.

There are many trends when it comes to runoff elections. Augusta voters don’t seem to follow any of them.

It may be the first runoff for this little campaigner, but the rest of Augusta is used to them. This is the city’s third mayoral runoff in a row. As routine as this is, past results have been mixed.

“I think that’s a tribute to really when you have good candidates that are running,” Willie Mays said.

In the 1998 election, the front runners were Ed McIntyre and Bob Young. Young came out on top in both the general election and the runoff. But when the two faced off again in 2002, McIntyre won the most votes in the general election, but Young won the runoff. So what about this time around?

“I don’t make predictions in runoffs,” said Ralph Walker.

Political expert Ralph Walker says this is anyone’s game.

“They’re very hard because they are so dependent on turn out,” Walker said.

And Augusta’s runoff turnout bucks the trend. Early voting numbers suggest turnout may be higher in this runoff than the general election in November.

Same story in 1998, almost 9,000 more people turned out for that runoff.

“Why that is I’m damned if I know it. It doesn’t happen any place else, Augusta’s unique as far as I know,” Walker said.

The unpredictable history doesn’t seem to matter to this year’s candidates.

“I’m not focused on history. I’m focused on Augusta’s future, so I’ll wait to see what happens today,” Deke Copenhaver said.

And for both candidates, what happens today is all that matters.