Over 2100 votes were cast by the county’s 5943 registered voters during the June 9 General Primary and Presidential Preferences Primary.
Candler’s Republican voters affirmed Donald Trump with 1,510 votes, while Democratic voters chose their party’s frontrunner, Joe Biden by an overwhelming majority with 489 of the 558 votes cast (88%).
Despite problems at other voting precincts in the state that were reported in the media, Candler County Elections Superintendent Tony Thompson stated that the local election went off with few problems.
“There were mostly good reports from what I hear,” Thompson said. “No long waits. There were some long lines during rush periods, but they moved along fairly quickly. A few who requested absentees came in to vote in person because they did not get their ballots in time.
“A large number of voters brought in absentee ballots to be canceled so they could vote in person.”
Thompson added, “There were some glitches because of the new equipment, but nothing held up the process for very long.”
The biggest concern had been the new scanner process required in order for ballots to be officially cast. However, Thompson said, “There were no jams on the scanners.” In fact, there was only one problem, a printout that had gotten wet when a voter used hand sanitizer was unable to be scanned. That problem was rectified and the vote was cast, Thompson said.
“We just have a good crew of poll workers who are not afraid of technology,” Thompson explained.
According to Thompson, 165 voters turned in their absentees to be counted on election day, and an additional three ballots that were pending rejection due to signature issues were ‘cured’ of defects on Friday afternoon. However, these 168 votes are not included in the unofficial results that are posted in this week’s paper.
In local races, Commission Chair Glyn Thrift received 64% of the vote (999) against challenger Bobby Odom (553), while Joe Carter won the coroner’s race with 72 percent of the vote (1,183 votes) over incumbent Allen Tyler (285 votes) and Jerry Brown (186 votes).
Tripp Fitzner, who won his bid for Middle Judicial Circuit District Attorney, received 1,009 votes to carry Candler County over challenger Tony May with 468 local votes.
In the election for State Senate for the next four-year term and the special election to complete the late Senator Jack Hill’s current term, Billy Hickman received more Candler votes than Scott Bohlke, Kathy Palmer, Neil Singleton and Stephen Jared Sammons. However, a run-off between Hickman and Bohlke will be held on Aug. 11.
In the U.S. Senate race, voters in Candler joined the rest of the state in selecting Jon Ossoff to face off against Republican incumbent David Perdue in November.
Liz Johnson received 400 votes to Dan Steiner’s 66 for 12th District Representative. Johnson will face incumbent Republican Rick Allen in November.
In the only local contested Democratic race, it was Gregory Thomas in the lead with 122 votes to Virgil Monte Meridy’s 102 votes for County Commissioner District 1. Thomas will face Republican contender Larry Lamar Miles Jr. in November for the seat that is previously occupied by retiring Commissioner Wayne Culbertson.
See Election Results on page ?.