Low numbers at voting polls for House District 24 seat special election

Wilcox said it could also be because the lack of interest in the candidates.
Published: May. 16, 2023 at 12:41 PM EDT
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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) - Marion County residents will soon have a new representative in the house district 24 seat.

UPDATE: Ryan Chamberlin wins House District 24 Special Election

Wesley Wilcox, the Supervisor of Elections in Marion County said low turnout numbers are likely because there is only one name on the ballot.

“At this point in time, I would hope that we could get a full 10 percent,” said Wilcox. “So far it’s been decent, you know. Special election whether it be primary or general is not normal here in Marion County.”

Wilcox said it could also be because of the lack of interest in the candidates. Republican Ryan Chamberlain is the only name on the ballot, although signs encouraging people to write in Robert Fox’s name are posted around Marion County.

They are running to replace Republican Joe Harding, who resigned after he was indicted on wire fraud and money laundering charges. That’s when Fox signed up to become a write-in candidate. He later told TV20 that he was tricked because he believed he would be helping the Republican party.

RELATED: ‘I got tricked’: Robert Fox says he was duped into being State House District 24 write-in candidate

Chamberlain won the GOP primary with 36 percent of the vote. The primary was closed to democrats and independents because of the write-in candidate.

Some people said the race is a waste of taxpayer dollars because a write-in candidate has never won in the state of Florida.

“What an election costs fiscally, in dollars, should not be that relevant to this process,” said Wilcox. ”We do everything possible so that we can conduct an election and fiscally should not come into the play.”

Wilcox said the turnout won’t compare to the primaries.

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