Century Mayoral Candidate Receives Zero Votes

September 1, 2016

Felic Fussner had hoped he would be the next mayor of Century, leading the town through an important recovery period following last February’s devastating tornado. Instead, he’s the guy in the four-way race that received zero votes. That’s right, no one voted for Felic Fussner in Tuesday’s primary election or during early voting, or by mail.

“I’ve never heard of a candidate receiving no votes,” Escambia County Supervisor of Elections David Stafford, who has held his position since 2005, said.

But Fussner said he was not exactly surprised that he received he none of the 333 votes cast in the mayor’s race.

“I figured as much,” Fussner said Wednesday morning. “The people considered me an outsider.”

Of course zero votes does raise the question — Did Felic J. Fussner vote for himself? Well, that answer is no, and that raises another set of questions.

Fussner’s Front Street home was at ground zero during the EF-3 tornado six months ago, picked up and moved several feet off of its foundation. He found another residence outside Century to call home as a result, but continued his campaign.

“The tornado moved my precinct, and my name was not on my ballot,” he said, making him unable to vote at all in the race.

So if Fussner moved, temporarily or permanently, was he even eligible to seek the office of Century mayor? The town charter says a mayoral candidate must live in the town at least six months prior to the date he qualified to run for office. But there is historical precedence governing candidates that might be displaced temporarily due to a natural disaster like the February 5 tornado, Town Clerk Leslie Gonzalez said.

She said the issue of Fussner’s residency was discussed, and the town’s attorney said the town council would holdĀ  the ultimate decision making power. But by the time the clerk was instructed to take the issue to the council, ballots were already printed with Fussner’s name.

Without a determination to the contrary by the Century Town Council, Fussner was still on the ballot come primary day. And he still received no votes.

A candidate receiving no votes is so unusual, Stafford took extra steps Tuesday night to make sure nothing had gone wrong with the electronic totals. The physical paper ballots were escorted by an Escambia County Sheriff’s deputy to the downtown elections office where a security seal was broken and the Canvassing Board conducted a hand audit of the paper ballots. Still no votes for Felic Fussner.

Fussner’s work on his campaign was all grassroots. According to his campaign finance reports, he did not purchase political signs, billboards or advertisements in the local media like the other candidates. His campaign was face to face.

Now that he lost his bid to be mayor in a big way, Fussner is back at work hoping to help Century rebuild following the tornado as a Florida Recovery Team construction manager.

And while he really can’t promise any votes, Fussner is offering his endorsement to Henry Hawkins, a former council member that is seeking to to oust incumbent Freddie McCall during a November runoff.

“I spoke to him (Hawkins) at length, and I believe he could do a good job. I believe he can get things going on tornado recovery,” he said.


11 Responses to “Century Mayoral Candidate Receives Zero Votes”

  1. A on September 3rd, 2016 10:56 am

    The Thought counts! good try.

  2. mike on September 2nd, 2016 3:35 pm

    0, wow, that’s gotta sting, just a bit. :)

  3. Wiley C. on September 2nd, 2016 8:44 am

    Wait just a dad-burn moment. If his permanent address is Century and his temporary address is somewhere else, wouldn’t his polling place be dictated by the permanent address? Lucky he got no votes. Doesn’t even know how the basic system of government works!!

  4. Mary on September 1st, 2016 9:18 pm

    This is the the best written article on NE in a very long time. It was written to get the audience’s attention and had good information. W2G!

    Fussner, sorry for you loss in the storm. :(

  5. Jf on September 1st, 2016 9:24 am

    He endorsed Hawkins, so I reckon all his votes will go to Hawkins!

  6. Sidney on September 1st, 2016 8:37 am

    Thanks to tg, fisherman, Sam n Mark the morning giggles, : )

  7. Grandma on September 1st, 2016 8:34 am

    William, that’s good reporting! Answered the question all of us had. He didn’t vote for himself because he could not vote due to temporary move. Thanks!

  8. fisherman on September 1st, 2016 7:22 am

    Only 333 total votes that’s a shame. The only people that have a right to comp[lain are the 333 that voted. The rest should keep their mouth shut. If you don’t vote you give up your right to complain about the problems.

  9. tg on September 1st, 2016 7:14 am

    I had a friend in Mississippi that received three votes and there were four registered voters living in his house guess how that went when he got home.

  10. Sam on September 1st, 2016 5:55 am

    If he was not a resident he should not have been on the ballot. What a mess.

  11. Mark B on September 1st, 2016 5:40 am

    Pretty interesting when you don’t even vote for yourself. :)

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