Low voter turnout for primary despite governor’s raceBy MARLAN JONES,
The Primary Runoff elections held on Tuesday, August 27, produced several close races.
Voter participation was surprisingly low considering the Republican candidate for governor was still undecided. Of the county’s 16,906 registered voters, 5,383 cast ballots, which represented 31 percent.
The Democratic ballot featured a single local race for supervisor of District 1 between G. Mitchell Chatman and Curtis G. Skiffer. The race was close in the initial primary race with Skiffer taking a slight advantage. Skiffer received 411 votes to Chatman’s 342 votes. However, the runoff was even closer and produced opposite results. Chatman won the race for supervisor District 1 by 12 votes. The totals were Chatman 345 compared to Skiffer’s 333. Chatman’s support remained consistent throughout the two rounds of voting, while Skiffer witnessed a 78 vote decline.
The Republican runoff ballot featured two local races. Supervisor of District 2 was decided between Danny Craft and Allen Maddox. In the initial Primary election Craft was close to receiving the necessary 50 percent of the votes to be declared the winner. Voting trends remained the same in this race. Craft was declared the winner after winning 568 votes, 31 more than the initial election totals. Allen Maddox received a total of 471 votes.
The Republican candidate for supervisor of District 5 was decided in a runoff between Randy Moore and Dean Barnard. Moore received the majority of the votes in the initial Republican Primary with 747, which was good for 46 percent. Barnard followed with 568 votes for 36 percent. The distance between the two candidates was closed considerably in the runoff, but the results remained the same. Randy Moore won the Republican nomination by receiving 742 votes in the runoff election. Support for Barnard received a boost, but were 12 votes behind. Barnard received 728 votes. Moore will represent the Republican Party in the General Election.
Republican Ballots featured a runoff between Tate Reeves and Bill Waller for Governor, and Lynn Fitch and Andy Taggart for Attorney General. Reeves won Simpson County with 2,698 votes, and went on to receive the Republican nomination for the State. Andy Taggart won Simpson County with 2,435 votes compared to Lynn Fitch’s 2,173. However Lynn Fitch won the state wide election.
The general election will be held on November 5. The governor’s race in November will be between Democrat-Jim Hood, Republican-Tate Reeves, Constitution Party- Bob Hickingbottom, and Independent- David Singletary.
For the office of Lieutenant Governor Jay Hughes ran uncontested in the Democratic Primary and will face Republican candidate Delbert Hosemann in the general election. Secreatary of State will be decided between Democrat Johnny Dupree and Republican Michael Watson.
For the office of Attorney General, Jennifer Riley Collins ran unopposed in the Democratic primary and will face Republican candidate Lynn Fitch in the general election. The race for Treasurer will be decided between Democratic candidate Addie Lee Green and Republican candidate David McRae. Incumbent and Republican candidate Andy Gipson will face Democratic challenger Rickey L Cole for the office of Commissioner of Agriculture. Democratic candidate Robert E. Amos and Republican candidate Mike Chaney will face off for Commissioner of Insurance. Representative of District 90 will be decided in November between Republican incumbent Noah Sanford and Democratic candidate L.R. Easterling.
There will be five contested local races featured on the November ballot. Republican incumbent Tommy Joe Harvey will face Democratic candidate Willie Ree McDonald and independent candidate Bill Jerrolds. Democratic candidate Terrence Norwood will face Republican Witt Fortenberry for the office of Circuit Clerk. Sheriff Candidates Darrell Walker (D) and Paul Mullins (R) will be featured on the ballot.
There will be two Supervisors races. Supervisor of District 4 will be determined between Republican Candidate Donny Welch and Democratic candidate Hardy Williams. The final contested race will be in for Supervisor of District 5. The office will be determined between Democratic candidate Larry Barnes and Republican incumbent Randy Moore.
This is an important time in our country as we have our voices heard in choosing leadership. Everyone is encouraged to register and exercise their right to vote. For more information on registering to vote please contact the Circuit Clerks office at 601-847-2474.