iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — Atlanta voters delivered a near-split decision in the city’s mayoral contest on Tuesday, making the runoff race too close to call.
Candidate Keisha Bottoms, a Democrat, declared herself the winner of the race early Wednesday morning, while her opponent, Mary Norwood, an independent, requested a recount.
Both candidates are members of Atlanta’s city council.
Bottoms led the race by a margin of less than 1 percent, which is the threshold where the second-place finisher can request a recount under state law, according to official reports. Just over 92,000 people voted in Tuesday’s runoff, which was held after no candidate received an absolute majority in November’s election. Bottoms led the general election, 26 percent to 21 percent.
“It’s not over yet,” Norwood told supporters, noting that she trailed Bottoms by just 759 votes. “We will be asking for a recount.”
“We will be here until every vote is counted and we know what happens,” she added.
Meanwhile, Bottoms, 47, celebrated a victory alongside outgoing Mayor Kasim Reed — who backed her run — as she spoke to supporters.
“I am just in awe of what God is able to do,” Bottoms said. “I’m so honored to be your 60th mayor.”
“This is about Atlanta. And what we said from day one is that this is about what we hope this city can be for our children’s children,” she added.
If chosen, Norwood, 65, would be the city’s first white mayor since 1974. The city hasn’t had a female mayor since 2010.
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