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St. Petersburg voters saw eight names on the ballot in Tuesday’s primary election for the city’s next mayor, but they picked two names more than anyone else.
Ken Welch and Robert Blackmon earned 39 percent and 28 percent of the vote, respectively, with third-place finisher Darden Rice netting 17 percent.
Precinct results show the two frontrunners’ performances were influenced by the demographics of different neighborhoods in the city. Welch won big in precincts with reliable Democratic voters, especially where many of the residents are Black. Blackmon’s success came in whiter areas that lean Republican.
Rice won one precinct, earning a plurality of the vote in the Crescent Lake neighborhood.
A candidate would have needed more than 50 percent of all votes to avoid a runoff. In most precincts, no one reached that mark. Candidates outside the top three struggled, although Wengay Newton finished second in several Welch strongholds.