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Monday, Apr. 21, 2014

Turnout high in local elections

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

(Photo)
Scott County election judges Brenda Williams and Barney Miederhoff help a voter with the ballot Tuesday.
BENTON -- If Scott County residents were to have their way, Democrat Hillary Clinton would face Republican Mike Huckabee in the presidential election Nov. 4.

Clinton led the Democrats with 2,931 votes in Scott County followed by Barack Obama with 1,443. John Edwards was a distant third for Democrats with only 191 votes.

Also on the Democratic ballot were: Ralph Spelbring, 5; Dennis J. Kucinich, 6; Bill Richardson, 7; Joe Biden, 3; Christopher J. Dodd, 0; Mike Gravel, 1; and uncommitted, 34.

The race was closer among the Republic candidates in Scott County.

Huckabee was the top Republican pick with 1,549 ballots cast in his favor followed closely by John McCain with 1,389 and Mitt Romney with 1,076.

Countywide results for the other Republican candidates were: Ron Paul, 113; Fred Thompson, 38; Rudy Giuliani, 24; Virgil L.R. Wiles, 0; Tom Tancredo, 0; Duncan Hunter, 1; Hugh Cort, 0; Alan Keyes, 3; Daniel Gilbert, 2; and 15 uncommitted ballots.

Scott County Libertarians cast 4 votes for Wayne A. Root; 2 for Dave Hollist; and 1 for Michael P. Jingozian.

The other Libertarian candidates on the ballot, Daniel Imperato, George Phillies and Steve Kubby, received no votes. There were also two uncommitted Libertarian ballots cast.

A total of 8,878 Scott County ballots were cast for a 35.25 percent turnout.

"I'm glad it was a good turnout and I think it shows people are interested," said Rita Milam, county clerk for Scott County. "Hopefully the future elections will do the same. ... We like it when a lot of people show up."

In Mississippi County, 32 percent of the registered voters turned out to cast a total of 2,744 ballots, - 1,067 Republican; 1,672 Democratic and five Libertarian, according to County Clerk Junior DeLay.

In unofficial results, the county's voters picked Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential candidate. Clinton garnered 1,079 votes, or 65.31 percent of the Democratic ones cast.

Barack Obama was a runner-up on the Democratic primary ticket with 499 votes, followed by 55 votes for John Edwards. Two votes were cast for Ralph Spelbring and one each for Dennis Kucinich and Joe Biden. Also on the Democratic ballot were Bill Richardson, Christopher J. Dodd and Mike Gravel, all of whom received no votes. Fifteen voters were uncommitted.

On the Republican ticket, Mike Huckabee had the most votes, with a total 455 -- 42.76 percent of the total Republican votes.

Runner-up was John McCain, who collected 362 votes, followed by Mitt Romney, who captured 213. Others collecting votes on the Republican ticket were Ron Paul with 15, Fred Thompson with six, Duncan Hunter with four and Rudy Giuliani with two. Virgil L.R. Wiles, Tom Tancredo, Hugh Cort, Alan Keyes and Daniel Gilbert all appeared on the Republican ballot, but received no votes. Seven voters who cast Republican tickets were uncommitted.

Libertarian candidates George Phillies and Steve Kubby each received one vote, while two ballots voted uncommitted. Candidates Wayne A. Root, Daniel Imperato, Michael P. Jingozian and Dave Hollist each received no votes.

With 3,908 voters casting ballots Tuesday, New Madrid County Clerk Clement Cravens said the turnout of around 33 percent of eligible voters exceeded his initial prediction and was far above the presidential primary turnout four years ago.

According to unofficial totals from Cravens's office, of the 1,349 voters who picked up a Republican ballot, Mike Huckabee was clearly the favorite. Huckabee had 656 votes, easily outdistancing John McCain who came in second with 386, followed by 250 for Mitt Romney. Also receiving votes were Ron Paul, 43; Fred Thompson, 2; Rudy Giuliani, 4; and uncommitted, 5. No votes were cast for the remaining GOP candidates.

The Democrats in the county clearly favored Hillary Clinton. Of the 2,555 Democratic ballots cast 1,801 went to Clinton with 610 for Barack Obama and 101 for John Edwards. Other votes cast were for Ralph Spelbring, 2; Dennis Kucinich, 3; Bill Richardson, 1; Mike Gravel, 1; and uncommitted, 11. Biden and Dodd did not receive any votes.

There were four individuals picking up a Libertarian ballot with three voting for uncommitted and one for Wayne A. Root while the remaining candidates failed to pick up any votes.

The precautions set up by the county clerk to ensure a smooth election apparently worked. As the ballots dwindled as they were fed through the tabulator Tuesday evening, Cravens discovered a problem - one precinct was missing.

After double checking the heavy metal boxes where ballots are placed after being marked by voters then rechecking the other precincts, Cravens and his staff determined the judges in a polling place where voters from two precincts cast ballots just voted the ballots from one precinct, effectively merging the precinct totals for Portage 1 and LeSieur 1.

"This really isn't a problem, the only issue is LeSieur is not showing any totals," explained Cravens. However, he noted, because the election judges kept track of the number of voters as they cast their ballots he knows totals voters for each of the precincts. Also Cravens assured each candidate received his or her vote as made by local residents.

He did say he would check with the Secretary of State's office to determine if any further actions would be required.