Election wrap up

By on August 15th, 2012

One race from the Tuesday ballot may take a few days to resolve.  Longtime Congressman Cliff Stearns is going to have to depend on provisional and overseas ballots if he wants to continue his career in congress. Running in the newly formed third congressional district, he trails Tea Party favorite Ted Yoho by just over 800 votes.  The provisional and overseas ballots typically make up three to five percent of the vote in a congressional race.

One time Alachua County Comissioner Robert Hutchinson continues his quest to get back in office. He won the District Three Democratic primary, and will face former Alachua City Commissioner Jean Calderwood. Incumbent commissioner Mike Byerly is shooting for his fourth term after winning his primary, he’ll face GOP nominee John Martin for the District One county commission seat. Voter turnout in Alachua County was just over 22 percent.

Alachua County voters will have to decide the School Board District 4 race in the general election. Leanetta McNealy outpaced incumbent Barbara Sharpe, but did not have enough votes to win outright.  School Board is a non-partisan race,  so those two will appear again in a runoff on the November ballot.

In state house races, District 20 was won by former Alachua City Manager Clovis Watson.  There is no republican so he’s elected.   And in the House District 21 race, Andrew Morey will be the democratic candidate taking on incumbent Keith Perry.

The battle will continue over who the next Marion County Sheriff will be.  Undersheriff Dan Kuhn defeated former chief investigator Chris Blair for the right to take on Bernie Decastro in the general election. They’re wanting to succeed Sheriff Ed Dean who’s retiring after 14 years in office.

In other Marion County primary votes, District 1 County Commissioner Mike Amsden lost in the GOP primary to David Moore who won with 51.1% of the vote.  District 3 Comissioner Stan McClain won the GOP primary with 52.3% of the vote.  Both Moore and McClain will take on write-in candidates in November’s election.  Ocala businessman Earl Arnett won the District 5 seat and will face democrat Jessica Hadley in November.

Marion County voters elected two new members to the Marion County School Board in Tuesday’s elections.  Retired businesswoman Nancy Stacy won the District 1 seat with 52% of the vote, and former principal Carol Ely won the District 2 seat with 62% of the vote.

The race for Marion County School Superintendent will NOT involve school board member Jackie Porter.  She lost to George Tomyn in the republican primary yesterday.  Tomyn will square off against Deputy Superintendent Diana Greene in the general election.

Marion County voters said no to two proposed school taxes in Tuesday’s elections.  Voters defeated a half mill tax, 52 to 48 percent.  That tax would have restored music, art and library programs in public schools.  In another vote, 59 percent of voters rejected another half mill tax that would have provided capital expenses to maintain aging schools.

Florida’s United States Senate race is gearing up for national attention. Incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson won his primary yesterday, he’ll face GOP  challenger Connie Mack IV.

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