Watch: Small Town Idaho Mayor Keeps His Job By Coin Toss

Nov 15, 2013

Don Bowden will remain the mayor of tiny Albion, Idaho after winning a tie-breaking coin toss. Bowden and his challenger, John Davis, each received 60 votes in the Nov. 5 election. Fewer than 300 people live in Albion.

Incumbent Bowden won the right to call the coin, and he picked tails.

Video courtesy of KMVT-TV

The coin toss wasn't a last-minute solution.  Idaho law says municipal elections that end in a tie vote are decided by the flip of a coin. What the law doesn't detail are specifics on how to do the toss. It doesn't describe whether the coin must be caught, or what kind of coin must be used. As we reported Thursday, Albion's lawyer had to figure out who got to call heads or tails.

Albion, Mayor
City clerk Mary Yeaman did the official coin toss.
Credit Ed Glazar / Times-News

City clerk Mary Yeaman administered the mayoral toss which she admits seemed like a lot of pressure.

“For right now I’ve just decided that whatever happens, happens and I’m not really responsible,” Yeaman said earlier this week. “Probably before the coin toss I might be a little nervous.”

As the two men shook hands after the tie-breaking coin toss, Bowden said to Davis and the crowd, "Well, as they say, I'd rather be lucky than good."

Copyright 2013 Boise State Public Radio