Nadine Smith

Craig Lowe Wins, Narrow Margin Triggers Automatic Recount

Filed By Nadine Smith | April 14, 2010 9:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Alachua County, Craig Lowe, Equality Florida Action PAC, Florida, Gainesville, gay mayor, openly gay mayor

Moments ago, Craig Lowe got the most votes in the race for mayor of Gainesville and could become the first ever gay mayor of a North Florida city.

Equality Florida Action PAC supporters contributed thousands of dollars and months of volunteer hours to help ensure victory. In a race decided by a razor thin margin our volunteers, donors and staff members were on the ground in Gainesville fighting every step of the way.

Alachua County election law requires an automatic recount in elections decided by less than 0.5%.

We'll monitor the process and keep you updated.

In the weeks leading up to today's election, anti-gay extremists used homophobic rhetoric and smear tactics to try to keep Craig from winning. A local church even posted a "No Homo Mayor" billboard on their front lawn.

Craig Lowe sent a special thanks to the entire Equality Team for helping make this
victory possible:

I would like to thank Equality Florida Action PAC for their tremendous help in my race. Not only did they endorse my candidacy early on, they also served as a watchdog against the lies about my campaign and put people on the ground to help get our message out to voters.

--Mayor Elect Craig Lowe

Craig Lowe was the most qualified candidate in this race. His record as a Gainesville City Commissioner brought him the endorsements of Equality Florida Action PAC, the Gainesville Professional Firefighters' Association, the African American Coalition for Political Action, the influential Alligator Newspaper and the North Florida Human Rights Council, among others.

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I'm so excited about this! Who were the other folks in the race?

Maybe the church can change their sign now to say, "We got a homo Mayor"? Just trying to be helpful while still rubbing their faces in it. :)

Or maybe one could be set up across the street. I'm the kind of vengeful bastard who would do that. Not really but pleasant fantasy.

Nadine Smith Nadine Smith | April 14, 2010 3:01 PM

Craig was running against someone heavily supported by the Tea Party. Craig has always been a trailblazer with a history of winnng by slim margins. In becoming the first gay city commissioner in Gainesville, Craig won that race by 16 votes.

Thank you, Nadine. We couldn't have done this without your and Equality Florida's support, along with so many other groups. Not the least of which are: the Alachua County Democratic Party, Stonewall Democrats of Alachua County/FL GLBT Democratic Caucus, Human Rights Campaign, Florida Together, local community/opinion leaders and volunteers, volunteers around the country making calls, and (of course!) LGBTQ bloggers on sites like Bilerico. (I'm probably leaving some out!)

It's humbling to imagine how things would have gone without the support of just one person or group. Thank you all!