Unopposed candidates create a long day at the polls in D'Iberville

By Brad Kessie - bio | email

D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - When Tuesday night is over, Gulfport, Bay St. Louis and Moss Point will have new mayors.  And who knows what will happen in the hotly contested Ocean Springs mayor's race.

The ballot counting suspense may be building in those cities. But, it's non-existent in D'Iberville.  D'Iberville voters seem so uninterested in Tuesday's election. There's a reason for that.  Every candidate in that city is unopposed.  As long as they get one vote, they win. That fact made it a very long day at the D'Iberville Civic Center.

"Wow. That's not good," a poll worker said, as she watched a dominoes game play out in front of her.  A dozen poll workers played dominoes at a back table, because nobody was turning out to vote.

While the game was going on, Ron Migliore read a novel.

"Without a book, I'd probably be sleeping," the poll worker admitted.

Four-and-a-half hours into the D'Iberville city election, the ward one sign in book had just three names in it.   The first two names were the ward's poll workers.  The third name was the husband of the councilwoman from ward one, who was re-elected by virtue of her primary night victory.

Every D'Iberville race was settled in the May primary.  But a general election had to be held, so the party winners could be officially elected.  The formality made for a very long day at the polls.

"With no competition going on, you can't expect the voters to come out in droves," Migliore said.

Too bad city ballots weren't handed out in the trailer next door.  The Mississippi Highway Patrol runs that trailer.

"My sister had to pick up a book from the DMV," Brittney Boston said, explaining why she was in the parking lot between the trailer and the city's polling place. The drivers license office had a lot more foot traffic than D'Iberville's voting precincts.

"Oh I'm telling you, we've been bombarded with people," joked Marie Clement.

Her sarcasm kept poll workers entertained.  So did a good dominos game.

One fact became crystal clear to 91-year-old poll worker Ruby Bradford.

"Nobody's been excited about voting," she said.

By lunch, just 27 D'Iberville voters had shown up.  That included Brittney Boston and her mom -- the women who were picking up drivers license information when they were reminded it was election day.

"It's just unfortunate that the people didn't come out and we didn't have more to do here today," said Bradford.

D'Iberville pays each of its poll workers $95.  The person in charge of each box gets another $20.  So, the city spent $1,120 to pay its general election poll workers.

Unless something unusual happens, Rusty Quave will once again be D'Iberville's mayor. His city council will include Joey Bosarge, Brenda Broussard, Henry Toncrey, Teddy Harder and Stephen Furney.  Broussard, Toncrey and Harder are incumbents who won their re-election bids.

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