Don't leave America's

fate up to chance.


"Coin flips, poker hands, and other crazy ways America settles tied elections."

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As ridiculous as it may sound,
coin tosses are still used in many states to resolve electoral ties,
leaving the decision on important topics up to chance.

Electoral Coins is a commemorative, limited-edition coin collection that shines a light on an antiquated method that should be corrected; and, most importantly, aims to prove that every single vote matters.

40 states still use some sort of random method to break tied elections.

Where has this happened before?



The top law enforcement official in one east Alabama county was chosen with the flip of a coin.

Democrat Henry Lambert and Republican James “Jim” Studdard were tied in the race for Clay County sheriff after all the votes were counted, each receiving 2,680 votes. In accordance with state law, the two men agreed to a means for selecting a winner: A coin toss. With both candidates present, the race was decided by flipping a coin.

Studdard won the toss.




A dead woman won re-election to a school board in rural Alaska after her opponent lost a coin flip meant to break an electoral tie.

Katherine Dunton, who died of cancer on October 3, the day of the local election, was re-elected to the Aleutian Region School District board after her opponent, Dona Highstone, called “heads” on a coin toss that landed “tails,” state and local officials said.

The coin toss was held in accordance with state law to break a tie of just 19 votes per candidate.




Cliff Farmer, of Hoaxie, Arkansas, missed an opportunity to vote for himself in a City Council election, with the vote ending in a 223-to-223 draw, according to an election official. Mr. Farmer was on a plane back from Orlando, Florida, and did not make it to the polls on time.

The tie was broken at the nearby county courthouse by a roll of dice. Mr. Farmer, the challenger, rolled a 4, losing to the incumbent, Becky Linebaugh, who rolled a 6, according to Ashlyn Griffin, the deputy clerk of Lawrence County, Ark.




In California, one argument in favor of, and one against, a proposed measure to change a city charter are sent to voters to help them decide. In 2016, in San Bernardino, there were two competing arguments for one of the positions. 

When selecting the arguments against the proposed ballot measure, City Clerk Gigi Hanna broke the standoff by flipping a coin… while on vacation.




The newest Commerce City council member was decided by a coin toss after current council members were deadlocked on who to choose to fill a vacant seat.

Steve Davis, a former police chief and small business owner, called "heads," won the coin toss and won a seat on the nine-member city council.

"I have always chosen heads," said Davis, "my entire life. I have this aversion with tails."

The process began this summer when a Commerce City council member left the board for a different job. The city accepted applications from the public for the open seat and whoever was selected would finish out the 16-month term.




An election for the governing board of the small Connecticut town of Bolton was decided by a coin toss in 2017.

Republican Michael Eremita kept his seat on Bolton’s five-member Board of Selectmen with a coin-toss win over Democratic challenger Kim Miller.

Both received 718 votes in the election.

Under the town charter, tied elections can be decided by a special election or a coin toss. Eremita and Miller agreed on the latter because a special election could have cost up to $3,000.

Eremita’s victory gave the board in the town of about 5,000 residents located 10 miles (16 kilometers) east of Hartford, a 3-2 Republican advantage.




The state that decided the 2000 presidential race with hanging chads and botched ballot designs added a page to its history of electoral quirkiness: a city council race that was decided by a coin toss.

G.P. Sloan and Richard Flynn each received 689 votes on Nov. 2. Two recounts did not determine a winner.

"This is a very unusual occurrence in this day and age when we have such sophisticated mechanisms to vote on, such as a touch-screen computerized voter system," Mayor Connie Fleetwood said. "We've come down to a coin toss."

A bicentennial dollar coin had President Dwight D. Eisenhower on its face and the Liberty Bell on its back, Mr. Flynn would make the call — heads or tails.

During the flip, Mr. Flynn shouted: "Heads." The outcome, however, was tails.

"There's nothing I can do about it," Mr. Flynn said. "He flipped the coin, and I lost."




The Idaho Elections Office held a coin toss in Canyon County to decide a winner in the tied election for precinct 26 committeemen.




The next village president in a southern Illinois community will be decided by a coin toss.

The Southern Illinoisan in Carbondale says Tammy O’Daniell-Howell and Bryan Riekena each received 11 votes last Tuesday in Colp.

Williamson County Clerk Amanda Barnes says the tie will be broken on April 20. Illinois law calls for such ties to be settled by a coin flip.




In Iowa’s Democratic caucuses — a contest between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders for the party’s presidential nomination — the results in several precincts were decided by flipping a coin, according to the Des Moines Register:

“It happened in precinct 2-4 in Ames, where supporters of candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton disputed the results after 60 caucus participants apparently disappeared from the proceedings.

As a result of the coin toss, Clinton was awarded an additional delegate, meaning she took five of the precinct’s eight, while Sanders received three.”

“Similar situations were reported elsewhere, including at a precinct in Des Moines, at another precinct in Des Moines, in Newton, in West Branch  and in Davenport. In all five situations, Clinton won the toss.”




When the mayoral race for a small Kentucky city ended in a tie, city officials turned to chance to determine the winner.

Kentucky law stipulates that election ties must be broken by "lot" — meaning the winner is selected at random. Pendleton County officials used a coin flip that night to determine who would lead the city of some 600 residents.




A City Council race in Albertville that hinged on a single contested ballot was instead decided by a coin flip.

The initial vote count had candidate Mark Barthel winning by one vote. A recount reversed the outcome, with Larry Sorensen up by one vote.

Barthel then contested a ballot in which the voter only partially filled in the bubble next to Sorensen’s name. The City Council was divided on whether the ballot should be considered valid, prompting the coin toss.

Sorensen was assigned heads and Barthel tails, heads prevailed.



A Maplewood City Council race resulted in a rare tie between council candidates Marylee Abrams, the incumbent, and Nikki Villavicencio, the challenger. The matter was settled at a city council meeting with the flip of a coin.

Under state law, votes that end in a tie need to be settled "by lot," which could be anything from a coin flip to drawing a name from a hat. The City of Maplewood decided to go with a coin flip, which the challenger Villavicencio won — and filmed.

The coin's two sides featured images of Susan B. Anthony and an American Eagle. Villavicencio called the toss in the air and correctly predicted the Susan B. Anthony side would land facing up.




Due to a 62-62 tie vote on April 5 in the Ward 2 race for St. James City Council, the fate of whether Gregory E. Edwards or Henry Nathan Kemnitzer would fill the seat came down to a coin flip. Per agreement beforehand, heads of the 1951 Franklin Half Dollar would be for Edwards with tails going for Kemnitzer.

County Clerk Pamela K. Grow presented the coin for inspection just after 9 a.m. “Here we go,” Grow said before flinging the fateful metal disk into the air.

Upon landing, the Franklin half dollar showed tails, thus bringing Kemnitzer into office. Prior to the coin flip, Edwards said regardless of the outcome he was happy that at least the coin flip would save taxpayer funds by avoiding a runoff election.

“This proves once again that every vote counts,” Fleming said. “The person who didn’t come to vote could have decided the whole election, and there were many people from Ward 2 who didn’t vote who are registered.”


North Carolina


When officials in Monroe, N.C., finished tallying the votes for the election for mayor, they displayed the results on a monitor. Robert Burns had received 970 votes — but so had Bob Yanacsek, one of his opponents. Under state law, the winner would be decided by a “method of random selection.”

“It felt like the longest roll ever,” Burns told The Washington Post on Monday after a weekend of celebrating. Yanacsek, meanwhile, watched Burns hug his supporters before the two candidates shook hands. “We didn’t lose the election,” Yanacsek, 53, said Monday. “We lost the coin toss.”

When Burns asked in the following weeks how a tie would be broken, he said he thought a county official was joking when they explained that it would be decided by random selection — a state law that goes into effect when 5,000 or fewer ballots are cast. In Monroe, which has a population of about 35,000, just 3,551 people voted, Jacumin said.




Upon the completion of the official canvassing of election results across Ohio from the November 2nd General Election, eighteen races resulted in a tie that had to be determined by coin flip or by some similar method. In all, following the official statewide canvass, twelve candidate races and six local issue races ended in ties. 

“In November, eighteen different local races in eighteen different counties ended in a tie, and any single, solitary voter would have made the difference in the outcome,” said Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose. “Every Ohioan has the uniquely American ability to impact how we are all governed, and I encourage each eligible Ohioan to register to vote and participate in every election. These election results are proof positive that your vote matters.”


the last 2 coin flips

Our Electoral Coins are divided into two commemorative sets:

The 2022 set consists of the Gun Laws Coin, Environment Coin and the Marijuana Legalization Coin. They commemorate the coin flip of ‘22, which decided the election of a Mayor in Kentucky.

The 2023 set consists of the Immigration Coin and the Book Ban Coin. They commemorate the last coin flip that happened in 2023, electing a Mayor in the state of North Carolina.


A Mayor in Kentucky
was elected by a coin.

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A North Carolina Mayor
was elected by a coin.

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Watch the commemorative Electoral Coins Official Launch video


Gold Proof Coin

A 24k-ish gold coin that commemorates one of the never-ending debates in politics. This is the Environment Coin. On one side, a green future that relies on renewable energy. On the other side, the trusted model of fossil fuels that powered the industrial revolution. A debate decided purely by chance.

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Gun Laws

Gold Proof Coin

A 24k-ish gold coin to decide if there should be tighter gun control or if we should respect the Second Amendment. A controversial decision that can only be made by an unbiased, almighty and wise coin.

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Marijuana Legalization

Gold Proof Coin

A 24k-ish gold coin that commemorates the possibility of another product in our stores, or more people in our prisons. Should marijuana be legally commercialized and used? Or should it be banned and punished? These handcrafted designs will make this decision for us.

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Gold Proof Coin

A 24k-ish gold coin that honors the hard decisions made on our borders. Heavier immigration policies or more welcoming policies for foreigners. Are we a nation of immigrants or are they here to take our jobs? It’s not fair for a person to carry the weight of such a decision when, on the other hand, a coin doesn’t feel weight.

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Book Ban

Gold Proof Coin

A 24k-ish gold coin that honors the hard decisions in our education system. Are they old enough to learn these topics in school? To teach them or not to teach them, that is the question, and why on Earth should a person carry the weight of answering it, when a coin could do it.

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IssueVoter is a nonpartisan, nonprofit online platform dedicated to giving everyone a voice in our democracy. Make a donation of any amount to IssueVoter from this page to get an Electoral Coin of your choice in the mail — a collectable reminder of the true power behind every single vote. Your support will help our message reach every corner of the country.

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Supplies are limited. If your selected coin is out of stock, you will receive a randomly selected Electoral Coin.

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