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Candidates in tied Indiana mayoral race ponder recount

November 4, 2015

The mayoral candidates in a tied race in the southern Indiana city of Jasper are considering whether to seek a recount.

Republican Mayor Terry Seitz and Democratic challenger Wayne Schuetter both received 1,856 votes on Tuesday, while independent candidate Josh Budd trailed far behind with 190 votes.

The candidates or party chairmen have until Nov. 20 to request a recount in the 15,000-person community. Both candidates told The Jasper Herald they hadn't decided.

Seitz, who is seeking a second four-year term, said he was talking with Dubois County GOP leaders about the next step.

"The state Republican Party has reached out as well," Seitz said. "It's gone to a level that seems to be beyond just my campaign."

If the race remains tied in results certified by the county election board, the City Council would vote by Dec. 31 on whether Seitz or Schuetter becomes mayor, according to state law.

Democrats currently hold a 4-3 council majority, though Republicans won a 4-3 majority for terms starting Jan. 1 in the city about 50 miles northeast of Evansville.

Schuetter, a retired social studies teacher, said he expected the voting results to be close.

"This is another good indicator as to why everybody needs to get out and vote," Schuetter said.

City Council President Tom Schmidt, a Democrat who didn't seek re-election, said he was surprised that the council could decide the mayoral race.

"I never dreamt that it would come down to this," said Schmitt, a council member since 1976. "It's a tough thing. I don't know what the protocol will be on this."

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