MARIETTA — A recount requested by four-term state Rep. Sam Teasley, R-Marietta, did not change the outcome of his losing reelection bid Friday.

Cobb elections workers gathered at 9 a.m. to recount the votes in the race between Teasley and Democrat Mary Frances Williams, who won last week by 173 votes.

The recount changed the results of the race by a single vote, according to Cobb Elections Director Janine Eveler, but Teasley still lost 11,754 votes to 11,928. With the recount, Teasley received one less vote than he initially had.

Eveler said the extra vote could have been the result of a provisional ballot unintentionally getting scanned twice on election night. Or it may have been because of a light mark on a ballot that wasn’t picked up during Friday’s recount.

“It could be any number of reasons,” she said.

Cobb’s elections board met at noon to recertify the midterm results to include updated vote totals from the recount and six provisional ballots that were initially rejected by elections officials.

Provisional ballots are issued when elections officials have questions about a voter’s eligibility, such as whether they’re registered or voting at their assigned precinct, among other factors.

A federal judge ordered county elections offices to review provisional ballots that were rejected in the Nov. 6 election. Of the 852 provisional ballots that were rejected in Cobb last week, six were accepted after the review.

Williams’ victory over Teasley means Cobb’s Legislative Delegation will flip from a Republican majority to a Democrat majority after Democrats picked up two House seats last week.

Democrat Erick Allen defeated Republican attorney Matt Bentley in the race to fill the seat held by retiring state Rep. Rich Golick, R-Smyrna, in District 40.

With victories in both District 37 and 40, Democrats will change the 21-member delegation in January from 12 Republicans and nine Democrats to 11 Democrats and nine Republicans.

The delegation will likely elect a Democrat chair as its leader at the beginning of the year and state Rep. David Wilkerson, D-Powder Springs, said he would like to be considered for the position.

“I’ve been discussing with my Democratic colleagues me running for delegation chair,” Wilkerson said after last week’s votes were tallied.

Teasley did not return phone calls requesting comment Friday afternoon.

Williams said she is relieved the election is finally over.

With a 173-vote lead going into Friday and a history of Cobb recounts having little impact on election outcomes, Williams said she was never really concerned about losing the race.

She did say she is eager to take office next year and get to work.

“I’m ready to get started serving the people of the district,” she said.


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