Nashville Mayoral Election Results: Cooper 35%; Briley 25%; Swain 22%


UPDATE – 10:37 – all precincts reporting

Metro council member at-large John Cooper and Mayor David Briley qualified for a September 12 runoff, while Carol Swain finished out of the running in third place. With 100 percent of the precincts reporting, the results were:

  • David Briley – 25.30 percent – 25,573 votes
  • John Ray Clemmons – 16.08 percent – 16,257 votes
  • John Cooper  – 35.01 percent – 35,386 votes
  • Carol M. Swain – 21.89 percent – 22,128 votes

Unofficially, the Nashville Election Commission reports that about a quarter of active, eligible voters – 101,083 – cast a ballot in the Mayoral election.


UPDATE – 7:22 pm

  • David Briley – 26.62 percent – 13,268 votes
  • John Ray Clemmons – 14.75 percent – 7,354 votes
  • John Cooper  – 36.61 percent – 18,249 votes
  • Carol M. Swain – 20.41 percent – 10,172 votes


7 p.m.

The polls are closed now. Here are the current results:

  • David Briley, 0 percent, 0 votes
  • John Coooper, 0 percent, 0 votes
  • Dr. Carol Swain, 0 percent, 0 votes
  • State Rep. John Ray Clemmons (D-TN-55), 0 percent, 0 votes

0 of 161 precincts reporting

We expect results to come in momentarily, with all results in by 10 p.m.

At stake is the mayor’s office in Metro Nashville. Incumbent David Briley won the office in a special election last May, taking 55 percent of the vote in a field of 13 candidates, easily clearing the 50 percent threshold needed to avoid a runoff election, The Tennessee Star reported at the time. Former Vanderbilt professor Carol Swain finished in second place with 23 percent of the vote. The final election turnout of slightly more than 80,000 was higher than had been expected.

Briley had served as vice mayor but took over as interim mayor when his predecessor, Megan Barry, resigned in disgrace.

A Tennessee Star/Triton poll of the mayoral election was conducted in June. More information on the poll is here.

Here are the raw numbers from the poll:

  • David Briley 27.8 percent
  • Carol Swain 22 percent
  • John Cooper 19.8 percent
  • John Ray Clemmons 10.8 percent
  • Undecided 19.5 percent

During a discussion last week on The Tennessee Star Report with Steve Gill and Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 am to 8:00 am – Gill and Leahy spoke to Metro Council at large candidate, Adam Dread about low early voter turnout and scooter safety and how it ties into the public’s concerns.

“25,000 early votes [as of July 26],” Steve Gill observed; adding, “Again, if you get 4,000 or 5,000 each of the last three days of early voting you could get to around 40,000. That’s again, we’re looking at maybe 85,000 total votes in the mayoral and council elections. That seems low to me.”

Dread replied, “You know what’s an interesting thing about Nashville is, a lot it’s really weather-related.  It’s been really hot the first part of early voting. The last two days have been beautiful. People seem to linger around there longer.

“And there not just getting out. And I think some of the candidates also started to push their own people to come out. I noticed in Bellevue there doing little things like, there was a Popsicle maker and things like that. I was planning on doing something with fireballs but apparently, that’s illegal.”

The discussion briefly turned to scooters downtown before returning to the election results to date, so far.

“It is a low low turnout. No one seems to be very excited about this stuff. And here’s the real thing, and I try to describe it to people like this,” Dread explained. “If you want to keep it status quo and keep our police officers leaving and numbers dropping, and keep scooters on the street, don’t vote because you’re going to leave it the same.”

According to the Nashville Election Commission, there are 399,956 registered, active voters eligible to vote in the mayoral election.


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Jason M. Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist at outlets of all sizes.






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One Thought to “Nashville Mayoral Election Results: Cooper 35%; Briley 25%; Swain 22%”

  1. Austin

    Cooper is more Socialist than Briley, “effective progressivism.”
    We know what that means!
    As Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) said “The lesser of two Socialists is still a Socialist!”
    Nashville has a bad choice in the run-off election coming up.
    The Democrat/Socialists win either way.