Breckenridge Texan

Mail-in ballots could determine candidates in run-off election

Mail-in ballots could determine candidates in run-off election
March 06
22:35 2018

With all of the Stephens County precincts’ ballots tallied, two local races have basically been decided and three will be decided by a run-off election. However, the candidates for one of those run-offs is still undecided, pending the deadlines for five potential mail-in ballots.

Although there were no local Democratic candidates for any of the local offices — except for the Democratic County Chairman — write-in candidates can still file to run against the Republican candidates in the Nov. 6 Uniform Election. The last day to file as a write-in candidate is Aug. 24.

In the local Republican Primary Election, Sharon Trigg won the County Treasurer race, and Mark McCullough won the County Commissioner Precinct 2 race.

Steve Spoon and Leslie Blackerby will have a run-off for the Justice of the Peace race. The run-off election for the Republican Primary will be May 22.

In the County Commissioner Precinct 4 race, the final two candidates in a run-off could possibly be determined by five mail-in ballots that could still come in. In that race, Eric O’Dell will face either Jamie Whitley or Donnie Sechrest in a run-off.

Christie Latham, the Stephens County Tax Assessor-Collector and Elections Administrator, said that there are five mail-in ballots that were mailed out to voters in Precinct 4 and have not yet been received by her office. Four of those ballots must be postmarked by Primary Election Day, Tuesday, March 6, and received no later than 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 7, in order to be counted. The fifth ballot was mailed to an overseas address, and the deadline for it to be received in the local elections office is five days after the election.

Because there are only three votes separating Whitley and Sechrest, those five ballots could make a difference as to which one is in the run-off. With the ballots that were counted Tuesday night, Whitley was ahead 140 to 137 votes. Latham will not know until the mail is delivered Wednesday if any of the four ballots will be counted, and the ballot that could come from overseas has until Monday or Tuesday to be received.

In addition to the four contested races, there were four uncontested races. The following unopposed candidates won the Republican Primary: Michael Roach, County Judge; Christie Coapland, District Clerk; Jackie Ensey, County Clerk; and Graham Reaugh, County Chairman.

The local votes for statewide races were still being tallied late Tuesday night, and the Breckenridge Texan will have complete results as soon as possible.

In the District 60 State Representative race, the local voters chose Mike Lang, who received the most votes, 993; Jim Largent had 614 votes; and Gregory Risse had 36 local votes. Late Tuesday, Lang was also leading district-wide with more than 58 percent of the votes.

All of the vote totals are considered unofficial until they are canvassed at an upcoming County Commissioners meeting.

Here is the chart from the Stephens County Courthouse:

Republican Primary Election Results - Local Races

Office / CandidateEarly Voting TotalsPrecinct
1-11
Precinct
2-11
Precinct
2-19
Precinct
3-11
Precinct
3-19
Precinct
4-11
Precinct
4-19
Precinct
5-11
Grand Totals
COUNTY JUDGE
Michael Roach86812318231644590138441585
DISTRICT CLERK
Christie Copeland86711717631664189134461567
COUNTY CLERK
Jackie Ensey85311517431654189126441538
COUNTY
TREAS.
Sharon Trigg7579614827513174106381328
Robin McCarthy1512932514915357297
COUNTY COMM. - PCT 2
Bear Grissom2612139
Mark Campbell1366914219
Mark McCullough19911217328
COUNTY COMM. - PCT 4
Jamie V Whitley862331140
Rodger Yoes851326
Eric O'Dell863151168
Donnie Sechrest752636137
Jim Blancq38112170
JUSTICE OF THE PEACE
Phil Devenport55851256126100
Dan Young207285072119213418405
Leslie LeBus Blackerby30937477158332316495
Steve Spoon324588113231433556607
James Wrenn547102713222108
COUNTY
CHAIR.
Graham Reaugh75410116729603984122401396

Story by Tony Pilkington and Carla McKeown

Cutline, top photo: A large crowd gathered at the Stephens County Courthouse Tuesday night, waiting on the results of the Republican Primary Election. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

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