Appellant Dana Meade and Appellee Tim Williamson were the candidates on the ballot in a run-off election in the Democratic primary for Sheriff of Baker County. Meade was the incumbent in the race and was, at the time of the election, serving as Sheriff. Meade was declared the winner by a margin of 39 votes. Williamson contested the results of the election. After a bench trial, the trial court issued an order setting forth findings of fact and reaching the conclusion that sufficient irregularities in voting and in the election process were shown to cast doubt upon the election result. The election was declared invalid and a new election was ordered. The Supreme Court has set aside elections under two different circumstances: where the evidence showed that a sufficient number of electors voted illegally or were irregularly recorded in the contest being challenged to change or cast doubt upon the election; or where systemic irregularities in the process of the election were sufficiently egregious to cast doubt on the result. The evidence presented at trial met neither of these standards. Accordingly, the Supreme Court reversed the trial court's order invalidating the August 21, 2012 run-off election in the Democratic primary for Sheriff of Baker County. View "Meade v. Williamson" on Justia Law
Henry Cook appealed the trial court's ruling that he was not a resident of Randolph County and therefore not an elector qualified to vote in that county. The court granted Cook's application for discretionary appeal and directed the parties to address the court's jurisdiction over this appeal as well as the merits of the trial court's ruling. Because a determination of voter qualifications, not clearly linked to a particular election, did not bring an appeal within the Supreme Court's jurisdiction over "cases of election contest," and because no other basis for this court's jurisdiction appeared to exist, the court transferred the case to the Court of Appeals and did not reach the merits. View "Cook v. Board of Registrars of Randolph County" on Justia Law
Appellant appealed the trail court's dismissal of her action contesting the outcome of the August 10, 2010 Stewart County primary election in which she was an unsuccessful candidate. Appellant filed the election contest on August 18, the general election took place on November 2, and the candidate who defeated appellant in the primary was certified as the winner of the election. The court held that appellant's appeal was moot where an election contest challenging the results of a primary election became moot after the general election had taken place and where appellant did not quickly seek statutorily-sanctioned supersedeas and/or an expedited appeal.