November 10, 2016 10:31 AM
Just about every election cycle, you hear about a race coming down to just a handful of votes. This election cycle, the tax commissioner race is such a race. Rickey Hughes, the Republican challenger, lost on Election night to Democrat Joy Cooper Hamilton by 8 votes. (Emphasis added)
The Chattooga County Republican Party, under the leadership of Chairman Spencer Hogg, have made Chattooga County very competitive for Republicans. For those who may not know, Chattooga County usually votes Republican in federal and state elections, but has been a stronghold for Democrats on the local level. That tide started to turn when their incumbent sole commissioner Jason Winters switched from the Democratic Party and qualified as a Republican.
Two Republicans also qualified for local office: Hughes and John Agnew for School Board. Agnew won, and Hughes came close. Another kicker to the story will be outstanding military ballots. My understanding is that there are exactly 8 ballots waiting to be received. It will be quite interesting to see if all 8 voted Republican for county tax commissioner. If they did, the assumption is that the race would have to go to a run-off since no one received the requisite 50% + 1 majority of votes.
Just remember, the next time it could be your vote that decides who wins and who loses an election.