Every year the White House Correspondents’ Association holds an election to pick three of their members to join the association’s nine-member executive board – each serving a term of three years. This year, the association also casted votes to see who among those nine board members would serve as the next President of the WHCA. In an unlikely turn of events, this year’s election has ended up with a tie.
According to the election results released by the WHCA, NBC News’ Kelly O’Donnell narrowly edged out Politico’s Anita Kumar in the presidential race, winning 204 to 191 votes. However, according to the association’s bylaws, the President of the WHCA must be elected to the executive board before they can take up the presidency. This means that O’Donnell’s victory is contingent on her also winning the At-Large executive board seat – a race that she tied with Kumar with each receiving 197 votes.
The decision now rests on the outgoing executive board who will reconvene later this week to make a tie-breaking vote for both the At-Large seat and the Presidency. Many White House reporters say they cannot recall the last time that a similar situation has occurred, Politico reports.
The two other board seats up for a vote were won by large margins. ABC News’ Karen Travers won the Radio Seat with 374 votes and Bloomberg’s Justin Sink won the Wire Services Seat with 364 votes. A total of 397 ballots were submitted. The association also voted overwhelmingly to amend their bylaws, with 333 votes in the affirmative.