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Blacktip Island Ballot Box Stolen; Mayoral Election On Hold

election hacked

The theft of Blacktip Island’s ballot box Thursday has put the election on hold and left the small Caribbean island leaderless. (photo courtesy of Rama)

The 2018 Blacktip Island mayor’s election was stymied Thursday when a supporter of one candidate stole the island’s sole ballot box in an attempt to forestall that candidate’s defeat.

“As always, Jack Cobia was set to win by double digits, this time over political newcomer Val Schrader,” Elections Supervisor Belinda Graysby said. “Then Dermott Bottoms decided to weigh in. He got a snoot full of rum, grabbed the ballot box and ran.

“It was more personal than political,” Graysby said. “Dermott’s always had a thing for Val. Nearest we can guess, he stole the election so she’d notice him. He’s holed up in the church now, howling her name and claiming sanctuary or some such nonsense.”

Both candidates condemned Bottoms’ actions.

“This was a planned political op from the get go,” incumbent Jack Cobia said. “Val knew the only way she’d win was by cheating. And that Dermott’d do anything for her. He’s probably tearing up ballots as we speak. Or eating them. Dermott’s not bright, but he has a certain low cunning.

“Bottom line is, until there’s official, verified results, I’m still the mayor,” Cobia said. “There’s got to be continuity of leadership, for the island’s sake, and I’m the one to provide it.”

Schrader refuted Cobia’s claims.

“I never I encouraged Dermott. About anything,” Schrader said. “He’s just bat-shit crazy. Always has been. I’m trying to lead the island, not deal with some cow-eyed drunk.

“Jack pulled every dirty trick in the book to rig this election, and I wouldn’t put it past him to have put Dermott up to this,” Schrader said. “But that doesn’t make stealing ballots right Win or lose, this isn’t how democracy works.”

The stolen votes have thrown island politics into a tailspin.

“Jack’s term expired midnight. Period,” resident Frank Maples said. “With the votes uncounted, technically Blacktip has no mayor. Jack can bluster all he wants, but he has no legal authority. And Blacktip’s mayor-less.

“Rafe Marquette’s trying to talk Dermott into giving up the box, but Dermott’s having none of it,” Maples said. “Jerrod and Gage snuck in and tried to steal it, but they got whacked up pretty bad. Dermott’s an unholy terror when he’s riled. And drinking. All indications are he’s got into the Communion wine.”

Other leaders focused on more pragmatic goals.

“Our aim’s to get Dermott out of the church so he’ll stop ringing those damn bells non stop and screaming, ‘Val!’ from the rooftop,” B.C. Flote said. “Rafe Marquette popped him with a couple of tranquilizer darts, but Dermott seemed to enjoy them. I guess he’s built up a resistance to pretty much everything. Except misplaced emotions.”


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Blacktip Island Mayoral Race Raises Immigration Ugliness

Blacktip Islanders gathered for an island hall meeting Thursday evening to discuss issues in the Caribbean island’s upcoming mayoral election.

Blacktip Islanders gathered for an island hall meeting Thursday evening to discuss issues in the Caribbean island’s upcoming mayoral election.

Blacktip Island’s mayoral race thrust immigration reform to the forefront of island politics Thursday after former mayor Jack Cobia demanded the immediate deportation of half the foreign workers on the Caribbean island.

Cobia is hoping to unseat first-term mayor Neville Crab.

“We got lots of good people on this island just begging for work,” Cobia said. “There’s way too many scuba hippies doing jobs locals could be doing. Chuck out the foreigners, problem solved. The current administration’s silence on this speaks volumes.”

Island politicos call Cobia’s plan an electoral Hail Mary.

“Jack’s trailing badly in the polls, so he’s built a straw man to compensate,” government watchdog Wade Soote said. “Sure, jobs are scarce on Blacktip, but so are people. Anyone able to keep a job has one.

“And the current mayor’s silent because he’s a bloody hermit crab,” Soote added. That’s why we elected him. He says nothing and does nothing. Best mayor we’ve ever had.”

Cobia’s rhetoric, though, has struck a chord with some locals.

“Every job that goes to some off islander means one of us’s going without,” laborer Dermott Bottoms said. “Ship five of them out, five of us got jobs.”

“It’s getting too crowded here,” local James Conlee said. “I pass people on the road all the time now. That never used to happen, you know. Most of them’re expats.”

But not all voters agreed.

“Dermott and his pals complain, but none of them’ve ever been able to hold a job for more than a week,” Eagle Ray Cove resort owner Rich Skerritt said. “Their issue’s not lack of work, it’s lack of beer money.”

With immigration reform talk driving his poll numbers higher, Cobia has upped his effort in recent days.

“All the foreign workers are concentrated around the resorts on the west coast,” Cobia said. “We’re gonna put up a barbed-wire fence to keep them off the rest of the island.”

Cobia declined to disclose how he plans to finance the proposed fence or where he would acquire barbed wire on Blacktip Island.

“There’s plenty of backers, I guarantee,” Cobia said. “And willing workers. That’s all I’m gonna say about that.”

Despite Cobia’s recent rise in the polls, experts doubt it will be enough to carry the election in the fall.

“There’s only five registered voters on Blacktip Island,” Soote said. “And three of them are in jail on drunk-and-disorderly charges.”

Cobia, meanwhile, remains upbeat.

“Even if I don’t get elected, at least I got people talking about important issues,” he said.

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