By Jean Ross

The top races in the 2017 local Atlanta election are not over yet. The race for Mayor, City Council President some of the city council races and Fulton County Commission Chairman all ended with the top candidate getting less than 50% plus one vote.

In the race for Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms held the lead over a crowded field of opponents throughout the night but only managed to pick up 26% of the votes cast while Mary Norwood came in second place with 21% of the vote. A surprise in the Mayor’s race was third place finisher former Atlanta City Council President Cathy Woolard who finished with 17% of the vote. Both Norwood and Bottoms said they are looking forward to facing each other in the run off election and both pledged to continue to move Atlanta forward. Norwood ran for Mayor in 2008 and lost in a runoff to current Mayor Kasim Reed who endorsed and supported Bottoms in the race.

The Atlanta City Council President race will also see a run off between Councilwoman Felicia Moore and Councilman Alex Wan. Wan won 38% of the vote and Felicia Moore picked up 35%.  C.T. Martin who had the support of Mayor Kasim Reed ended up in third place with 26%.

One of the closest races saw City Council Post 1 At Large incumbent Michael Julian Bond go toe to toe with Atlanta School Board Chairman Courtney English. With 100% of the vote counted Bond appears to have won the race with a little more than 50% beating English by 365 votes thus avoiding a run off.

Other City Council incumbents who won reelection without a run off include Carla Smith in District 1, Ivory Young in District 3, Natalyn Archibong in District 5, Howard Shook in District 7, and Joyce Sheppard in District 12.

District 4 incumbent Cleta Winslow faces a run off with Jason Dozier. Candidates in two other city council districts will be int he runoff. In City Council District 9 Kwame Abernathy will face Dustin Hills and in District 11 Harold Hardnett will face Marci Overstreet.

Newly elected members of the Atlanta City Council include Matt Westmoreland in City Council Post 2 At Large, Amir Farokhi in District 2, Jennifer Ide in District 6, J.P. Matzigkeit in District 8 and Andrea Boone in District 10.

City Council Post 3 At Large representative Andre Dickens was the only unopposed incumbent.

There will be a runoff for Fulton County Commission Chairman between former Fulton County Commissioner Rob Pitts and former Georgia State Representative Keisha Sean Waites. There will also be a runoff for the Fulton County 4th District seat vacated by the death of Commissioner Joan Garner between Kathryn Flowers and Natalie Hall (wife of Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall).

The turnout was lackluster for the election in Fulton County. Of more than 640,000 registered voters only 140 thousand voted in the election-that’s roughly 22% of voters.

In Forest Park, Georgia voters made history by electing their first African American Mayor.  Angelyne Butler defeated incumbent Mayor David Lockhart and will now lead one of the largest cities in Clayton County.

The run off election is scheduled for December 5.


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