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Backus takes mayoral battle by 126 votes; recount set for Wagner-Binetti race | Certified election '13

Rich Wagner - Courtesy photo
Rich Wagner
— image credit: Courtesy photo

In the end only 126 votes separated Nancy Backus from John Partridge.

But it was enough to declare Backus the official mayor-elect of Auburn and the first woman ever to win that position.

Election officials certified the results on Nov. 26.

Partridge conceded the close race to Backus via telephone Nov. 21.

Backus, and council-elects Claude DaCorsi, Yolanda Trout and either Position 6 incumbent Rich Wagner or his challenger Michelle Binetti take the oath of office at the first council meeting in January.

That's because the race between Wagner and Binetti ended up so close — Wagner had 6,125 votes, 50.1 percent in the combined results of King and Pierce counties and Binetti had 6,095, or 49.9 percent — the result calls for an automatic hand recount.

Binetti actually bested Wagner in King County, 5,583 to 5,304 votes, but Wagner beat Binetti in Pierce County 811 to 507.

Barbara Ramey, communication specialist with King County Elections, explained what happens next.

"Basically, we schedule the recount, but it hasn't been scheduled yet," Ramey said. "We go through and sort and fold ballots that are in the relevant jurisdiction and conduct the recount. We are waiting to hear about perhaps another request so that we can do them both."

The results of measures, however close, don't qualify for automatic recounts, Ramey said, but one may be requested. All such requests must be in to King and Pierce county elections by 4:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 2.

"There were a lot of close races, but Seatac in particular we're anticipating hearing from. I assume we'll know fairly soon after Monday when the recount's going to be," Ramey said.

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ELECTION RESULTS

(Certified Nov. 26, combined King and Pierce County totals)

MAYOR

Nancy Backus, 6,717 votes, 50.47 percent
John Partridge, 6,591, 49.53 percent

CITY COUNCIL

Position 2

Claude DaCorsi, 6,774, 57.16 percent
Jodi Riker-Yap, 5,076, 42.84 percent

Position 4

Yolanda Trout, 6,756, 55.63 percent
Frank Lonergan, 5,389, 44.37 percent

Postion 6

Rich Wagner, 6,125, 50.12 percent
Michelle Binetti, 6,095, 49.88 percent

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