Mike Vaughn outside of Hunter’s Bend Elementary on Oct. 24, election day/ Photo by Brooke Wanser
By BROOKE WANSER
Former Ward 2 alderman candidate Mike Vaughn has filed a suit in chancery court alleging his opponent in the race, Dana McLendon, “intimidated voters” to help him secure his election last month by 28 votes.
The suit alleges: “There were numerous irregularities and election violations involving a violation of numerous state laws, by Defendant McLendon,” referring to the Oct. 24 alderman election, which McLendon won with 630 votes to Vaughn’s 602.
It continues, “The irregularities, illegality and fraud were of such an egregious nature that it would render the election results untrustworthy both in fact and as a matter of law.”
In the suit, Vaughn also asks that the court halt McLendon’s swearing-in ceremony, which is set for Tuesday night at the Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting, and requests that the election results be voided and a new election run.
McLendon, who will be sworn in for his sixth term as Ward 2 alderman, said the allegations are false.
“This is a desperate act by a man who covets an office,” he said Friday. “It’s unfortunate that he views the world this way.”
McLendon said no hearing had been set. “I think it’s going to be dismissed,” he said.
Mayor Ken Moore said he was aware of the allegations, which he called “disturbing,” and that the city’s legal department was examining the suit.
Though he said there wasn’t a formal opinion on it yet, Moore said if the court has not issued a restraining order by Tuesday, McLendon will be sworn in.
After last month’s election, Vaughn expressed disappointment in a Facebook post to his official page.
“This race is in the can. I still believe in democracy. Too bad the Ward 2 Alderman election wasn’t a race about best ideas. I tried. There is still another day,” he wrote.
Vaughn said he will release a formal statement regarding the suit next week.
You can read the suit here:
Vaughn v WCEC and McLendon