County follows GOP tradition

While the two county commission seats up for re-election drew a lot of attention, the only other contested county race this fall was for treasurer.

Incumbent Jeannine Bateman (R) defeated challenger Rhon­da Casey-Curry (I) 3,737-1,664. Neither candidate could be reached for comment.

For national offices, Marion County voters favored Republican Donald Trump over Democrat Hillary Clinton by a margin of 3,928 to 1,777.

Meanwhile, incumbent U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran (R) was re-elected. He received 4,405 votes to outpace Patrick Wiesner (D) with 894 and Robert D. Garrard (Lib) with 242.

The U.S. House of Representative race for District 1 went to Roger Marshall (R) with 3,891 votes. Alan LaPolice (I) received 1,202 and Kerry Burt (Libertarian) 299.

In state offices, Don Schroeder (R), running unopposed, was re-elected to the Kansas House of Representatives for District 74 with 2,958 votes.

In District 70, incumbent Republican John E. Barker easily defeated Democrat Jo Schwartz, 1,470-716.

In the race for State Senate District 35, incumbent Richard Wilborn (R) defeated challenger Levi Morris (D), 3,983-716.

Election highlights

County Clerk Tina Spen­cer, who also serves as election officer for the county, was re-elected with 5,059 votes.

She said the voter turnout in Marion County exceeded 2012 by 1 percent.

“However, there was a significant increase in the number of advance and early voters in this election,” she said.

In 2012, Spencer said 399 ballots were mailed; this year 487 were mailed.

“We had 284 early in-person voters in 2012, but this year, that number was 1,355,” she said.

In 2012, the clerk’s office listed 7,713 registered voters. That number increased this year by 213 for a total of 7,926. Almost 400 more voters turned out for the 2016 general election than in 2012, with 5,458 voters in 2012 and 5,836 this year.

Even with the increased activity, Spencer said the election went “very smoothly.”

“Wait times seemed to be relatively short in all locations,” she said. “One of the best things about that day for me was going into Peabody-Burns High School, which was a polling location this year, and having one of the members of the senior class stop me to say she voted for the first time.”

Spencer said in early October, she visited all five high schools, talked to each senior class about voting, and helped them get registered.

“It was really nice to see the end result of that today,” she said.

Spencer said she was pleased with the volunteers who worked the polling places around the county.

“In Marion County we have some of the most dedicated and professional people you will find anywhere,” she said. “The poll workers did a fantastic job, and they are true patriots in every sense.”

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