Updated: This story was updated to correct an earlier version that stated “Yoho Claims Congressional Seat” in the headline.
Despite delays in voting results across the state, Alachua County candidates and supporters watched as the numbers arrived within moments of each other on Tuesday.
Not only were live results delayed but some of Alachua’s precincts also had technical difficulties, which delayed them from reporting results for more than an hour.
“We did have some technical difficulties,” said Supervisor of Elections Pam Carpenter. “Precinct 6 is having to drive their equipment in so that we can upload the results from here.”
A record breaking 5,609 early votes were cast. Carpenter said it was the highest number of early votes the county ever had in a primary election despite a 19.51-percent voter turnout.
“We usually see something in the 20 to 35 percent depending on whether it’s a primary or general. So, this is pretty much in line with what we have seen before,” Carpenter said. “Of course, we would love to see it be 100 percent, and we had hoped that we would be seeing some bigger numbers since we had such a nice turnout for our early votes.”
Along with Alachua County results, a decision was also reached on the 3rd Congressional District Republican primary. Ted Yoho prevailed over contender Jake Rush – Alachua County was among those with polling results in Yoho’s favor.
“I would like to thank the voters of North Central Florida, Alachua County and all of the counties in the best district in Florida – the 3rd Congressional District – for their help, their support and their trust to return me back to Washington for my second term,” Yoho said. “I’m honored and privileged, and I look forward to working harder than I did last time.”
Kat Cammack, Yoho’s campaign manager, credited the win in part to Yoho’s decision to not release a negative campaign against his opponent, Jake Rush.
“The Congressman doesn’t engage in negative campaigning,” Cammack said. “This district is sick and tired of the negative campaigning, and so, our opponent chose to engage in it, and we’re seeing the results of it right now.”
Even as Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Pam Carpenter waited for results from District 6, candidates in downtown Gainesville began celebrating the end of a long campaign trail.
Incumbent Lee Pinkoson defeated Harvey L. Ward by 2,977 votes for the Alachua County Commission District 2 Democratic primary.
“I’m honored that they had enough confidence in me to give me another four years,” Pinkoson said.
Like Pinkoson, successful candidates were eager to thank constituents and reiterate campaign promises. Others, like Ward, applauded their fellow party members and their victorious opponents.
“We’re disappointed, but we did everything we could and that’s how it works out,” Ward said. “I’m very excited for Ken (Cornell). He’s a great candidate. He’s going to be a great county commissioner, and I’m looking forward to voting for him in November.”
Ken Cornell, winner of the Alachua County Commission District 4 Democratic primary, thanked his volunteers and the community for it’s support.
“The reality is the primary is over,” Cornell said. “I had an incredible opponent. Hopefully, we can come together, and we can work on things that are important in this community.”
Gunnar Paulson defeated Philoron Wright with 66.67 percent of the votes to reclaim his Alachua County School Board District 3.
“You don’t get a vote like that unless everybody in the community is behind you,” Paulson said.
The Alachua County general elections will be decided on Nov. 4.
Kelly Audette contributed reporting.
Full Results of Alachua County 2014 Primary and General Elections on Aug.26:
U.S. Representative District 3: Ted Yoho
U.S. Representative District 5: Glo Smith
Governor (REP): Rick Scott
Governor (DEM): Charlie Christ
Attorney General (DEM): George Sheldon
County Commission District 2 (DEM): Lee Pinkoson
County Commission District 4 (DEM): Ken Cornell
Circuit Judge, Group 11: William Davis
County Judge, Group 4: Susanne Bullard
School Board District 3: Gunnar Paulson
School Board District 5: Rob Hyatt