No recount for Thomasville City Council race decided by 1 vote

If there’s ever been proof that your vote counts, this is it.
Published: Nov. 8, 2023 at 4:11 PM EST
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ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - If there’s ever been proof that your vote counts, this is it. One of the Thomasville City Council races on Tuesday was decided by one vote.

The voter turnout in Thomasville was just under 15%. Thousands of registered voters chose not to vote for one of the most influential leaders in their community.

WALB spoke with both of the candidates about the outcome.

Thomas County Elections Supervisor Frank Scoggins told WALB Wednesday afternoon he thinks the voter turnout was “pitiful.” He was very frustrated that the city had important races and his office got new voting equipment but many people still didn’t seem to care.

It was the narrowest of possible margins in the race for the Thomasville City Council District 2 Post 1 seat. Real estate agent Royal Baker III defeated incumbent Jay Flowers by a final tally of 824 to 823. Flowers is also the Thomasville mayor, so it was a critical race. flowers told me he too was surprised by the low voter turnout.

“I think that it’s not a lack of interest, it’s a lack of motivation,” Mayor and current City Council Member Jay Flowers. “If you look at any other communities around you’ll find that when it’s local only the turnout is much smaller than when it’s a state or national election.”

Baker believes part of the low voter turnout can be attributed to a property tax being deferred for 2023.

“Anytime you’re hitting somebody in the wallet, it gets them fired up and I think that since that went away people said,” Baker said. “Eh, I’m not worried about it so much.”

But if we’ve learned anything from this race:

WALB’s Madison Foglio said, “Your vote does really matter.”

Flowers said, “Totally, and no way could it be illustrated better than what we have today.”

Flowers told WALB he isn’t challenging the outcome, and the Scoggins told me there won’t be a recount. Baker got the required 50% plus one vote needed to win, one the nose.