Sarasota City Commission race headed for runoff

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SARASOTA – With six candidates and only two seats up for grabs, it appears the race for the Sarasota city commission is headed for a runoff.

Residents in the city headed to the polls Tuesday to vote for the candidates they think should fill seats on the city's commission, and with all but one precinct reporting, none of the candidates will reach the 50% threshold required to win office.

Those top three candidates are current mayor Suzanne Atwell, Susan Chapman, and Richard Dorfman.

Supporters congratulated Chapman at her victory party at the Word of Mouth restaurant. “I am grateful for all of the people who have supported me and came out to vote today in this miserable weather,” said Chapman.

Less than a mile away, Mayor Suzanne Atwell thanked her fan base at Caragiulo’s Restaurant. “I feel absolutely wonderful. I know there would be a runoff, but this is wonderful. I feel good, I’m ready to move forward. It's time to move forward and we are going to go full steam ahead with this next election.”

And on Main Street, Richard Dorfman shook hands and greeted voters at Patrick's restaurant. “We have to keep knocking on doors, keep talking to people, and get the word out. It's all about touching voters. No other way to do it in a city election.”

Also on the ballot were Linda Holland, Kelvin Lumpkin and Pete Theisen.

The runoff election is scheduled for May 14th.

The unofficial final results, with all 18 precincts reporting:

Suzanne Atwell 2606, 42.42%

Susan Chapman 2705, 44.03%

Richard Dorfman 2311, 37.61%

Linda Holland 1531, 24.92%

Kelvin Lumpkin 1440, 23.44%

Pete Theisen 434, 7.06%

The At-Large Commissioners will be sworn into office Friday, May 17, 2013 at noon at City Hall, 1565 First Street.