The race for the Republican nomination for the Alabama District 27 Senate will be decided by lot.
After a close race, Auburn City Council member Jay Hovey won against incumbent Tom Whatley by a single vote out of 17,000 cast. The Alabama Republican Party candidate committee announced that the Senate District 27 Republican primary was a tie following a challenge to the results by Charles Whatley, Whatley's father and Dr. Gary Hunt, a campaign contributor.
A tie in a state legislative election is determined by using the outcome by some method of random chance, i.e. drawing a lot, according to Alabama code 17-12-23. Specifically, the Secretary of State John Merrill, in the presence of Gov. Kay Ivey will draw a lot, which could mean a coin toss or some other method of chance both parties agree to.
Whatley challenged the results on the premise that some Democratic voters, with no primary contest in the area because only one Democrat ran, crossed over to vote for Hovey. Crossover voting is not illegal in Alabama.
At the time, there is no clear date for when the drawing will occur. Whoever wins will run against Democratic candidate Sherri Reese in November.
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