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Sarasota News Leader May 31, 2013 Page 33 interns at SRQ Magazine several days to wade through the election returns to separate the "bullets" from persons casting two votes for first and second choices. Ogles said the bullet votes — representing the wishes of about one-third of all voters — turned out to be "statistically insignificant" because they split equally between third-place finisher Dorfman and the second-place candidate Susan Chapman. She received 990 bullet votes; he received 963. However, had the 2,321 bullet voters also marked their ballots for a second choice, that could have changed the outcome of the election. Fewer than 300 votes separated Chapman and Dorfman at the end. Chapman's real strength was in the absentee votes. She picked up 1,918 of those, while Dorfman garnered 1,435. Although Dorfman out-polled Chapman on Election Day (1,425 to Chapman's 1,387), that was not enough to offset the nearly 500-vote margin for Chapman from the absentees. "There was momentum for Dorfman at the end, but it didn't catch up with Chapman's absentee lead. He won on Election Day, and tied in early voting, but lost big on the absentees," said Ogles. Virtually across the board, Atwell was the top vote getter. In all 18 precincts, she was either No. 1 or No. 2. And she was on top in Districts Two and Three, where most of the city's ballots are cast. Chapman took District One on the north side of town. Between them, they captured the two at-large seats. Dorfman was the odd man out. Richard Dorfman. Photo by Stan Zimmerman Atwell scored her victory. She campaigned as a centrist and consensus builder, and Ogles said that was a winning combination. "The way this election [system] works, it rewards consensus builders," he said. Ogles noted a pattern in the May voting that might have some significance in 2015 when city voters go back to the polls to elect (or reelect) district commissioners. "Dorfman did well downtown, and the south trail showed a preference for Dorfman," said Ogles. "The neighborhoods showed strong support for Chapman." One candidate has already announced for Atwell broke a hex on incumbent re-election the 2015 race to represent District One. in the city. During the past three election cy- Danny Preston pre-qualified as a candidate cles, no incumbent had been re-elected until on April 3. %

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