Local Politics

Former school board candidate wants runoff canceled

Posted October 21, 2009

— Cathy Truitt, who on Monday dropped out of the District 2 race for the Wake County Board of Education, asked local elections officials Wednesday to halt a planned runoff election.

Truitt finished second to John Tedesco in the Oct. 6 election, in which Tedesco garnered just under 50 percent of the vote and Truitt getting about 24 percent.

She immediately requested a runoff election, saying she offered an alternative to the neighborhood schools philosophy espoused by Tedesco and three other candidates who won their races: Chris Malone in District 1, Deborah Prickett in District 7 and Debra Goldman in District 9.

At a Monday news conference, Truitt said she didn't think she could win a runoff, so she conceded the race to Tedesco.

Wake County Board of Elections director Cherie Poucher said the runoff would go on as scheduled because ballots had been printed and absentee and early voting had started. The runoff would cost more than $30,000, she said.

Truitt sent a letter to the elections board Wednesday in an effort to rescind her call for a runoff.

Poucher said the board would meet Friday to seek guidance from state elections officials on whether the runoff could be canceled. State law doesn't cover instances where a candidate tries to withdraw a request for a runoff election, she said.

If the runoff proceeds as scheduled and Truitt were to win, the seat would remain vacant, and the school board would appoint someone to fill it.

Tedesco, Malone, Prickett and Goldman were endorsed by community groups like WakeCARES and the Wake Schools Community Alliance because they said they were willing to change the district's student assignment policies away from one that promotes socioeconomic diversity to favor neighborhood schools.

Together with school board member Ron Margiotta, the four new board members will give the neighborhood schools position a majority position on the nine-member board.


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  • archmaker Oct 21, 2009

    and speaking of taking back our country (and "what the people want")...

    democracies are led by the majority, not the person who gets the most votes.

    Tedesco got the most votes, but the majority of the pathetic amount of people who actually showed up to vote DID NOT vote for him. And that's why we should have a real run-off.

    I don't care who you vote for people, but you should have done it!

  • injameswetrust2003 Oct 21, 2009

    It is not Ms. Truitt's fault that the runoff would cost $30k. This is how the process works. Thank goodness the grumpy old man was not included in the runoff, with just one percentage point less than Ms. Truitt.

  • Unaffiliated Patriot Oct 21, 2009

    Of course she has an alternative plan from the ones who were elected. That's because she's out of touch with what the people want. People are waking up, starting to take their country back before it finishes sinking in the manner it has done since January, ..... and that's encouraging.

  • archmaker Oct 21, 2009

    A waste of $30k? In Garner, the FIRST election was the waste of money. School board was the ONLY thing on the ballot. No wonder the voter turn-out was so low! I highly suspect that the results wouldn't have been the same if more people hadn't been complacent. As I see it, on Nov. 3 we're going to have a ballot and and election in Garner anyway (municipal election). Let's have a real run-off.

  • larieke Oct 21, 2009

    Even though she said in another interview she was willing to help out in the school district for free to help make up for the $30,000, it's too late for me. Just today I spent 88 cents to mail in my wife's absentee ballet for Tedesco.

  • purplepat777 Oct 21, 2009

    We need to change our laws. A person who loses an election with 24% of the votes with 50% of the votes going to the other person should not be allowed a runoff.

  • wiseowl Oct 21, 2009

    remember folks - the ballots have already been printed. you'll save the cost of paying the election volunteers but the printing costs are sunk.

  • JennyT Oct 21, 2009

    Why was a runoff allowed in the first place? Sounds like a case of sour grapes. Cancel the runoff and bill her for the $30K.

  • time4real Oct 21, 2009

    this woman has the biggest ego and it's all about her attitude that I've ever seen. She should be sued by all of district 2 for her distain of all of us!

  • Tax Man Oct 21, 2009

    She requested that the runoff be canceled, so cancel it! Just do not count that part of the ballot for anything! You can post a notice at all polling places that the race is not really available and then do not count any votes for that race. Seems very logical to me.