By Moses Leos III
One election will not be enough to decide a pair of Kyle City Council seats as both the District 5 and District 6 races are headed for a runoff.
Less than 905 Kyle voters participated in the election either through early voting or on Election Day, which was May 9. That equates to about four percent of the eligible population of registered voters who cast a ballot in this election.
Political newcomer Damon Fogley will go up against Jaime Sanchez in the runoff for the District 5 seat. Meanwhile, Kyle City Council District 6 incumbent Tammy Swaton will have a runoff against challenger Daphne Tenorio.
According to unofficial results for District 5, Fogley gained the most total votes of the three candidates, but only garnered 49.68 percent of the vote. Sanchez obtained 38.02 percent, while challenger Laurie Lutrell finished with less than 15 percent of the vote.
Fogley gained 190 votes to Sanchez’s 116 in early voting numbers; Luttrell trailed with only 54 votes.
But Sanchez’s numbers improved during Election Day, where he captured 122 votes to Fogley’s 121.
Falling short of avoiding a runoff was “disappointing” according to Fogley, who was surprised to see his percentage fall from early voting numbers.
“I knew it was going to be close. I was confident I was going to win,” Fogley said after seeing the early voting numbers. “I didn’t think it was going to be a landslide, but I thought I could hit the 50 percent mark.”
Fogley said he will continue to “do what I’ve been doing the last two months” to prepare for a runoff. However, having spent all of his contributions in the leadup to Saturday, Fogley said he will not “ask for contributions.”
“I have a diversified donor list,” he said. “I’m not going to ask for money, but if they feel like they want to contribute to my campaign because they believe in me, so be it.”
Sanchez could not be reached for comment after the posting of results.
In District 6, Tenorio led all three candidates with 108 total votes, or 42.18 percent of the vote. Swaton wasn’t far behind with 95 votes, or 37.10 percent. Challenger Dex Ellision finished in third with 53 total votes, or 20.70 percent of the vote.
But Swaton and Tenorio were neck in neck after the release of early voting numbers. Tenorio held a one-vote lead in early voting with a narrow 59-58 margin over Swaton. Ellsion gained 22 votes during early voting.
Tenorio said she was “disappointed” but did expect a runoff. Swaton echoed that sentiment.
“I expected a runoff, especially with three people running,” Swaton said. “The numbers were not far off from what I thought they were.”
Swaton said the chance at a runoff was “exciting” as it would allow her to “get another chance” at talking to voters. She also believed the close early voting totals could spur more people to cast a ballot in the runoff.
“I think that speaks volumes and hopefully it will encourage more people to go out and vote,” Swaton said.
Tenorio said she “couldn’t be more pleased” to see “so many people registered to vote.”
“I’m looking forward to aggressively pursing this runoff,” Tenorio said. “I’m confident the people who supported me all along will support me and I will be more aggressive in getting those voters out.”
City council will canvass the results. A runoff election could be voted on for May 30.