Incumbent loses seat

Incumbent Ed Depuy’s term ended Tuesday night as Akin Akinyemi won the election for Leon County Commissioner at Large. 

Akinyemi was named the winner over his opponent Ed DePuy by an 8.56 percent margin, according to the Leon County supervisor of elections office Web site.

Elvira Akinyemi, Akinyemi’s wife, said she was confident in her husband throughout his campaigning.

“At no time did I doubt him,” Mrs. Akinyemi said. “He has worked very hard.”  

Akinyemi’s wife said he started the race in May, llater than any of the other candidates. She also said despite his late start, the campaign team and supporters remained determined.

“We are quite confident that we will win,” said Jackie Colson, volunteer coordinator for the Akinyemi Campaign, earlier on the night of election results. 

Major political players in Leon county and the state of Florida attended Akinyemi’s election party, held at Sharkey’s in the Highpoint Center Atrium of Tallahassee.

Dave Jacobsen, District 4 Representative for the Democratic Party, was one attendee.

“The commission needs some diversity,” he said. “He is the unifying force for all the citizens of Leon county.”

Akinyemi’s sister-in-law and two nieces from Brighton, Co., were in attendance as well.

“I think we are all lucky charms,” said Akinyemi’s niece, Amber Galicia.

With the election in hand, Akinyemi said he does not plan to be complacent.

“[The way] I have won my campaign [is] the same way I will work as a commissioner,” Akinyemi said. 

While DePuy’s campaign party at Po’ Boys restaurant in downtown Tallahassee was filled with family, friends and supporters, there were not enough supporters at the polls to win him the election. 

DePuy was leading early Tuesday night, and the back deck of Po’ Boys responded loudly with cheers and excitement.  However, as the night went on, Akinyemi took the lead and maintained it after all the votes were counted. 

DePuy said he knew it was going to be a close race. 

“It’s razor thin,” said Depuy before Akinyemi was officially declared the winner. According to the supervisor of elections Web site Akinyemi led 53.53% against 46.67%.

Ed Bayo, a local lawyer, said DePuy deserved another term.

“When there’s an incumbent running and he has done a fairly good job, you got to go with the incumbent,” Bayo said.

However, Akinyemi’s supporters said the dynamics of this election worked in his favor.

“With early voting and Obama running, we definitely had help,” Colson said. “What better ballot to belong to?”