Pa. election tie broken with 'low' number drawing

HOLLIDAYSBURG, Pa. (AP) - November 30, 2011

Democrat Joseph Claar and Republican incumbent Edward Helsel were tied with 221 votes apiece after recounts in the Nov. 8 election for Greenfield Township supervisor in central Pennsylvania.

So both candidates met with Blair County elections officials on Monday. Each picked one of several sealed envelopes containing a sheet with a number on it - with the understanding that the low number would win.

The Altoona Mirror reports that Helsel drew a "12" and Claar drew an "8." Afterward, they shook hands.

Helsel had been a supervisor almost continuously since 1988. He didn't quibble with the tie-breaker, saying, "It's been done this way for years. If it isn't broken, don't fix it."

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