Thursday, August 4, 2011
Superintendent to runoff
By BARRY BURLESON and SUE WATSON
Ten incumbents reclaimed their Marshall County positions during the Democratic Primary Election Tuesday.
Unofficial press-time totals, with all 24 precincts reporting plus absentee ballots, were announced around 11:30 p.m.
One of the most-watched races of the night proved to be for superintendent of education, which is headed to a runoff.
Winners included chancery clerk Chuck Thomas, circuit clerk Lucy Carpenter, coroner James Richard Anderson, county attorney Shirley Byers, sheriff Kenny Dickerson, tax assessor Juanita Dillard, tax collector Betty Byrd and supervisors Eddie Dixon, George Zinn and Ronnie Joe Bennett. None of those face opposition in the General Election in November.
Thomas, re-elected to a third term as chancery clerk, got 57 percent of the vote. He beat challenger Monet Bell Autry 5,263 votes to 3,921.
Carpenter received 5,458 votes (59 percent). She will serve a 10th term – the longest serving circuit clerk in the state. She had two opponents – Cathy Elliott Brittenum 2,466 votes (26 percent) and Brenda Kaye Wilson Rogers 1,403 (15 percent).
Anderson was re-elected to a second term as coroner. He received 5,964 votes (67 percent) to 2,958 votes for Gary Wayne Teel.
Also getting the most votes for a second term as county attorney was Byers (4,892 votes or 53 percent). Challenger Amery Ewing Moore was close behind with 4,345 votes.
Dickerson won a fifth term as sheriff with 65 percent of the vote. His unofficial total was 6,182. Trailing were Don Cothern with 2,097 votes (22 percent) and Dwight L. Harris with 1,201 (13 percent).
The tax offices will remain intact with Dillard winning a second term and Byrd a third, each getting a large portion of the vote. Tax assessor Dillard, with 76 percent, beat Clista Ash 6,831 votes to 2,154; and tax collector Byrd, with 63 percent, defeated Joyce Ford Brown 5,945 votes to 3,433.
One of the most hotly-contested races in the county was for superintendent of education. Don Randolph did not seek re-election for that office. The deputy superintendent and a school board member are headed to an August 23 runoff. Jerry Moore was the top vote-getter Tuesday – 2,931 votes or 49.66 percent. Felicia Anderson Harvell followed with 1,359 or 23.03 percent. Not making the runoff were Mike Hamblin with 829 votes (14 percent) and Marketta Liggins Steward with 783 votes (13 percent).
District 1 supervisor Willie Flemon did not seek re-election. Four candidates were seeking his seat. Moving to a runoff will be Charles Terry (656 votes or 39 percent) and Conery DeBerry (534 votes or 32 percent). Eliminated were James E. Isom (371 votes) and Oscar Lee Fant (127).
Dixon turned back two opponents to return to his District 2 supervisor’s seat. It will be his fourth term. He got 1,396 votes (69 percent) to 392 for Winfred Allen (19 percent) and 246 for Kebin Mitchell (12 percent).
District 3 supervisor Keith Taylor, with 1,110 votes or 78 percent, rolled past Annie Moffitt, with 305 votes, in the Democratic primary. Taylor will face Republican challenger Terry Rodgers in November.
Zinn coasted into his third term as District 4 supervisor with 1,355 votes (79 percent) to Lee Roy A. Holmes’ 363.
Bennett, the incumbent District 5 supervisor, turned back three opponents for the win. He got 1,659 votes or 65 percent. Next was Steve Wilson with 406 votes or 16 percent. Clay Byers and Evelyn Curry Elliott followed with 311 and 180 votes, respectively.
Both constable races in Marshall County advance to the August 23 runoff.
In the North District, incumbent Johnny Fitch led the ticket with 1,382 votes (37 percent). His runoff opponent will be Leon Cothern, who got 1,058 votes (28 percent). Others in the race were James Stinson (717 votes), Billy Smith (439) and Christopher Sisk (150).
In the South District, Antjuan Lester and Jesse Johnson will face each other in the runoff. Lester got 1,540 votes (29 percent) to Johnson’s 1,007 (19 percent). Eliminated were Bill Rowland (878 votes), Carlisle Buford (819), Kenneth McMullen (690) and Johnnie Smith (319).
There will also be a runoff for justice court judge, North District. Leading the ballot were Mae Garrison, with 1,221 votes or 32 percent, and incumbent Eugene D. Brown Jr. (1,169 votes or 30 percent). Not making the runoff were O.R. “Scooter” Dempsey (974 votes) and Derwin Cobb (487 votes).
Ernest Cunningham, justice court judge for the South District, was unopposed. He will serve a seventh term.
For State Senate District 2, incumbent Bill Stone received 5,973 votes in Marshall County (67 percent). His opponent, Henry Boyd Jr., got 2,885 votes. Totals from Benton and Tippah counties were not available at press-time, but it appeared Stone had easily wrapped up a win in the Democratic Primary. He will face Republican Michael Cobb in the November General Election.
State representative for District 5 Kelvin Buck, a Democrat, and state representative for District 52 Tommy Woods, a Republican, are unopposed.
Other unofficial totals from the Democratic Primary, in Marshall County only, were:
• For state representative, District 13 – Billy D. Gray (366 votes), Jeff King (215), Don Randolph (1,116), Steve Shaw (552) and Bobby Watson (422).
• For governor – William Bond Compton (953 votes), Johnny L. Dupree (2,076), Bill Luckett (4,411) and Guy Dale Shaw (771).
Unofficial totals from the Republican Primary, in Marshall County only, were:
• For governor – James Broadwater (25 votes), Phil Bryant (291), Dave Dennis (37), Hudson Holliday (10) and Ron Williams (38).
• For lieutenant governor – Billy Hewes (144 votes) and Tate Reeves (245).
• For secretary of state – Ricky Dombrowski (147 votes) and Delbert Hosemann (216).
• For state treasurer – Lynn Fitch (234 votes), Lucien Smith (44) and Lee Yancey (95).
• For commissioner of agriculture and commerce – Cindy Hyde-Smith (124 votes), Max Phillips (167) and Dannie Reed (78).
• For Northern District public service commissioner – Boyce Adams (188 votes) and Marvin Cox (163).
There was about a 50 percent voter turnout in Marshall County.
“It was lighter than it should have been,” said circuit clerk Carpenter.
She also said the election process went smoothly.
“There were no problems – no machine problems,” Carpenter said. “We just had the usual questions – like ‘Where do I vote?’ ”
Carpenter said she is humbled by being given her 10th term. Her first race was in 1975 and she had four opponents.
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