CANTON, Miss.–If you’re a Canton resident and you were inclined to cast a ballot, you votes Tuesday. But, for a number of reasons, your vote wasn’t official until Thursday, just before lunch.
It was a variety of voting problems and glitches that held up the election commission. It was finally determined that Canton businessman Arnel Bolden just barely edged out incumbent Mayor Dr. William Truly. With 30 percent for Bolden and 29.8 percent for Truly, both men were expected to hit the campaign trail again for a run-off election May 21.
Greg Green, who was a very close third, is now out for a second time.
The Secretary of State’s office was monitoring the vote count. Among the glitches was one that was almost laughable, if not so serious.
Apparently a ticket from the 2012 Obama-Romney election was still stuck in one of the Deibold electronic machines, and was not detected until 51 votes had been cast already on the machine Tuesday. Once that ticket was discovered jammed in the machine, it was cleared for further voting.
There was also an incident where the incumbent mayor was caught on a WAPT-TV camera helping two people with their votes. Truly denied any impropriety and was cleared, despite protests from poll watchers. Those votes were counted.
Who will win in two weeks is now a matter for the voters again. Who did not win Tuesday was Ward 4 Alderman Louis Smith, who appeared in court Thursday to answer a bribery charge after being arrested amidst Wednesday’s vote count. His arrest may have had noting to do with the election, but the FBI is being tight-lipped about the nature of the charge.