Hannant Declared Winner in Ward 3 Draw

By Jeremy Coumbes on April 20, 2021 at 5:29pm

Kent Hannant (left) and Brandon Adams (right) draw cards to decide who will represent Jacksonville Ward 3 in the Morgan County Courthouse Tuesday.

The winner of the Ward 3 Aldermanic contest in Jacksonville has finally been decided, however it was not without a small measure of controversy.

Incumbent Ward 3 Alderman Brandon Adams and challenger W. Kent Hannant met at the Morgan County Courthouse to decide the winner of the race that has remained tied at 169 votes each following the April 6th consolidated election.

Morgan County Clerk Jill Waggener chose a process of drawing cards to decide the winner. The cards two through ten in the suit of hearts were chosen for the candidates to pick from. Waggener says she feels it was a fair process.

The Assistant State’s Attorney Chad Turner explained how we were going to work the process today. He showed both candidates the cards, asked them to both verify that none of them were marked or folded in a way that would give an advantage to one candidate over the other.

We shuffle them, we laid them out on the table. Mr. Adams being alphabetically first chose the first card and then Mr. Hannant and Mr. Hannant did choose the higher card so he will be declared the winner. I will certify the results and send them over to the City of Jacksonville.”

Adams drew the three of hearts, and Hannant drew the higher card by just one, pulling the four of hearts from the cards that were laid out face down on the table in the Morgan County Courthouse Law Library.

Prior to the draw, Adams said that he did not like the process because he felt that due to the number of cards on the table, he had a 10% chance of winning. Assistant State’s Attorney Chad Turner told Adams that because there were only two people drawing, the odds were 50% that he would win or lose. Adams said he still didn’t agree on the odds, however, he did agree to go ahead with the process and draw.

Waggener says her office began the final certification process of the April 6th consolidated election this afternoon. She says the final report will be completed sometime tomorrow morning.