‘We definitely made history’

Published 9:10 am Thursday, November 15, 2018

Davis files for recanvass after tie for city commission decided by drawing from hat


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After last week’s election left two candidates tied for the last seat on the Nicholasville City Commission, Bethany Davis has filed for a recanvass of votes taking place today for not only peace of mind, but to show her supporters she did not give up.

“I have no ill will toward Patty and I have so much respect for her as a person,” Davis said. “I think we both handled it very well.

“The recount process speaks nothing on her character, it is simply the fact of trying to see this through so I know at the end of the day if I won, lost or draw.”

Davis said her decision to ask for a recanvasssing of the machines after she tied the vote with Patty Teater at 3,756, is because she wants to do her due diligence, and at the end of day know she exhausted all efforts and did so with dignity and grace.

“This is my first run in politics. I am not a politician,” Davis said. “I felt it in my heart I need to get involved in the community. Parks and Recreation is huge, and you cannot serve on a board unless you are elected… That was my biggest let down. I really wanted to be out there trying to make a difference in that realm.”

Davis said this is the first time there has been a tie for the final seat on the Nicholasville City Commission.

“We definitely made history,” Davis said. “(Last Tuesday), they said you guys need to come to the office and we will discuss this. They called Frankfort, and in city elections, it is determine by lot. Lot could be a coin toss, or you can draw names out of a hat. People kept teasing like why don’t you guys arm wrestle… We both thought the hat draw was the closest thing to a 50/50 chance.

“They did (also) say this is just to determine a preliminary winner and … the candidate who does not win will have rights to a recanvass and recount and things of that nature.”

After the election, Davis said she called the Kentucky State Board of Elections who informed her the decision in a tie would be based on city statues.

Because Nicholasville does not have a statue about a tie in an election, the rules defaulted back to the state which entitles Davis to a recanvasssing of the machines for free.

If the tie still stands, Davis said she then has the option to pursue a recount which could cost anywhere from $4,000 to $6,000, not including any legal fees which she also might incur.

If Davis is found to be the winner after the recanvasssing, she said it would then be up to Teater to decide to pursue the recount.

“For me the recount is not necessarily about me,” Davis said. “If I would give up so easily, then what is that saying to the people who voted for me? What is that saying to little girls and little boys who I have coached and been around if I gave up that easy?

“My goal in running is to build a better future for those children… especially when I did not lose the election. The people elected me. It was by chance that a seat was not filled with my name.”

Since the election, a GoFundMe page has been established in Davis’ name. Davis said a family friend decided to start the page to help fund the recount if it does take place.

“Some people, it was their first time voting in their life and they said they felt cheated because that was how it was decided,” Davis said. “If people continue to give, I will obviously use that, but I do have a little bit of money in savings. (Although) it is not enough to cover the whole thing.”

If the recanvasssing results are the same as the results from last Thursday night, Davis said she will have to post a bond in an amount established by the Jessamine County Judge-Executive David West. After posting that bond, she will then be given instructions on how to proceed with the recount.

If the vote goes to Teater, Davis said she is considering running again in two years in the next Jessamine County election.

“I am definitely considering it,” Davis said. “People say you should be so proud because you made it so far. I am. I am very proud… The people of Nicholasville spoke, and they wanted me and Patty. To me, that makes me genuinely proud of not only myself and of my campaign but of the people that helped me… I am one of the most blessed individuals on the planet in my eyes because of the support I have received. It has been overwhelming and nothing short of a blessing to realize how many people are hungry for a change, and also how many people thought that I could be a good change or could have been a good influence on our city. That to me, it means the world.”