Lincoln County Primary results: Closely-watched races, runoffs, and sighs of relief
Published 11:19 pm Tuesday, August 8, 2023
The focus Tuesday night in Lincoln County was primarily on the Republican Primary Election results. No local Democratic candidate ran opposed on their party’s ticket.
Most closely watched were the races for District 14 district attorney, Lincoln County coroner, county tax assessor/collector, and county sheriff.
With D.A. Dewitt “Dee” Bates retiring at the end of this term, attorney Joey Norton and Lincoln County Assistant D.A. Brendon Adams went toe-to-toe in the Republican primary. Adams garnered 3,278 votes (43%) while Norton pulled in 4,135 (54%) in Lincoln County. District 14 also covers Pike and Walthall counties. The winner of this face-off will be up against Democratic candidate Patrick Earl Beasley in November.
In the race for coroner, Blake William Wallace won the three-way battle for the Republican nominee with 4,553 votes (63%). James D. Martin took 1,737 votes (24%) and Joseph Honea III had 657 (9%). There were 22 write-in votes. Current coroner Clay McMorris will retire at the end of his term. Wallace will face independent candidate Sherry Bowman Bessonette in November.
“That’s alright. I guess God has something different for me,” Joseph Honea III said Tuesday night.
The candidate for Lincoln County coroner did not appear discouraged by his failure to win in Tuesday’s Primary Election. Instead, the results came as a clear statement to him that something else was in his future.
Incumbent tax collector/assessor Blake Pickering easily kept his post with 67% of the vote — 4,778 votes. Opponents Rita Wilkinson Goss took 18% (1,268) and Marjorie Montgomery took 14% (1,039). Two write-in votes were also submitted.
In the race for Lincoln County sheriff, incumbent Steve Rushing took the Primary with 50.34% of the total, or 3,617 votes. Challengers Kelly Porter got 1,959 votes (27%) and Troy Floyd took 1,457 (20%). Voters wrote-in 62 additional votes.
Rushing will face three independents in November — Leslie Falvey, Willie J. “Meeka” Gayten Sr., and Henry G. “Bub” Simmons Jr.
Incumbent Justice Court Constable Post 2 W. Lavon Boyd races a runoff on Aug. 29 against challenger Wade Hinshaw. On Tuesday, Boyd took 1,126 (36%) of the total 3,095 votes and Hinshaw took 1,331 (43%). The third candidate, Kirby Ebbers, garnered 566 votes (18%).
In District 2, incumbent supervisor Jerry McGehee will face Keith Lewis in the Aug. 29 runoff. McGehee received 45% of the vote (523) and Lewis took 38% (449). The third contestant, Virgil E. Stewart, received 16% (188).
District 3 will also see a runoff between Ricky Wayne Nations, who got 42% (729) and John David Hart, who received 37% of the vote (646). The third candidate, Brooks Warren, received 19% (331). The winner of the runoff will face independent candidate Jason McDonald in November.
Other local races
A few sighs of relief were slowly let out as the stress began to fade for some Primary winners.
In the contest for Justice Court Judge Post 1, incumbent Ian Smith claimed 2,754 votes (67%) to challenger Shelley Harrigill Barron’s 1,232 (30%), with five write-ins also submitted.
Justin Case won the Constable Post 1 with 53% (2,172) of the vote to Lance Lewis’s 43% (1,775). Eight write-in votes were submitted.
For District 1 supervisor, Republican Donnie “Speedy” Hedgepeth and incumbent Democrat Jerry L. Wilson will advance to the General Election, as neither had a Primary opponent.
District 4 had a clear winner in Eli Ferguson, who received 67% of the vote — 1,218. Opponents Todd Bowlin and Calvin Kees took 20% and 16%, respectively. Bowlin had 380 votes and Kees had 302. The smile on Ferguson’s face after the final tally made his feelings apparent.
In District 5, incumbent supervisor Doug Falvey kept his seat with 55% of the total (928 votes), versus his opponent Grady Case’s 45% (755).