The hotly contested race for mayor of Little Rock headed to a runoff Dec. 4 between banker and former Highway Commissioner Frank Scott, Jr. and businessman, attorney and former Little Rock School District Superintendent Baker Kurrus.
Scott led the voting in the general election with 37%, followed by Kurrus with 29%. State Rep. Warwick Sabin, D-Little Rock, was a close third with 28%. A 40% total would have allowed Scott to avoid a runoff.
The vote totals were 25,075 for Scott, 19,619 for Kurrus, and 19,089 for Sabin.
Two other candidates, Vincent Tolliver and Glen Schwarz, trailed with 3% each.
Speaking at his campaign watch party, Scott said, “For those who did not know who we were, we understood that this race started as born, raised and still resides in southwest Little Rock. … They said we did not have a chance. They said, ‘What is he even doing?’ But they did not know about my family, friends and whole tribe.”
Scott said Little Rock could be a better city than Dallas, Nashville or Atlanta, saying, “If you believe in unifying this city and making certain we reach its true potential, the time is now!”
He said the campaign now faces “a 30-day journey” after knocking on 20,000 doors and calling 65,000 people during the run up to the election.
In an interview at his watch party, Kurrus said the campaign got a late start by entering the race in June but made the runoff “by hard work, basically.”
Kurrus said that with two candidates, “The issues will become a little bit crisper, maybe the differences a little more apparent.”
He said he has more experience.
“I’ve got a background where I’ve actually been a change agent at large organizations, whether that’s a school district where I was superintendent, whether it was in business. I’ve actually managed a lot of people with big budgets and know how to do it.”