A Hartford Superior Court judge has ordered a new election to select the Democratic nominee in the 5th Assembly District of Hartford and Windsor.

Script writers out there, take note. Here is a real-life plot twist: With Leo Canty and Brandon McGee tied in a three-way race, it came down to a disputed absentee ballot that the judge ordered opened. And the ballot was cast for — Donald Trinks, the third candidate.

The tie was unbroken.

“It was just a movie scene in that courtroom,” Canty said.

Trinks, the mayor of Windsor, said he will drop out, leaving voters to choose between the two candidates who tied. He declined to play pundit and predict who will benefit by his departure.

Canty and Trinks are from Windsor, McGee from Hartford. Will Canty be the beneficiary as Windsor dominates the newly drawn district?

Trinks did not immediately endorse anyone.

“At this point, I think I’m going to kind of sit back and let them work on their campaigns,” Trinks said.

Canty said he expects he and McGee won’t have trouble engaging the electorate.

“I heard it over and over while door-knocking, ‘My vote doesn’t matter,’ ” Canty said.

That’s been put to rest.

There is another twist: The candidates cannot raise additional funds, so this will be a contest settled by volunteers, not dollars. With the new election on Oct. 2, it will be a brief, intense contest.

“It’s the way campaigns should be,” Trinks said.

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Mark PazniokasCapitol Bureau Chief

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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