Citizens who finished fourth, fifth and sixth in the race for three Trenton City Council seats sued, alleging the city clerk may have miscalculated the number of votes needed to determine the runoff election.

Last week, City Clerk Brandon Garcia ruled that a runoff was not needed in the at-large race, and the winners were Yazminelli Gonzalez, Crystal Feliciano and Jaci Edwards. The results of the 8 November general election were confirmed on Wednesday 23 November and the draw was held on the morning of Friday 25 November.

Flavio Camuves, a lawyer for the presumed unsuccessful candidates — Kajo Manuel, Tywanda Terry-Wilson and Alex Bethea — said in court filings that he had been asking Garcia to share his math since last week.

“Trenton’s city clerk neglects and refuses to provide the necessary data so that the correct statutory formula can be applied and calculated,” Kamuves said.

Kamuves argues that the statute provides for an alternative way of counting the runoff numbers, and he wants a Supreme Court judge to order an immediate halt to the election until his theory can be substantiated.

But Komives waited until today to ask the court to halt the election until the city clerk explained how he tallied the winners, even though he could have filed his emergency application as early as last Wednesday.

Following Gov. Phil Murphy’s order to move the runoff from Dec. 6 to Dec. 13, Mercer County officials began sending out ballots this morning.

As long as one of the candidates for the general council overcomes the barrier of 50% +1 of the votes cast, the top three votes avoid a second round. Gonzalez received 3,675 votes, 878 more than she needed.

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