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November 23, 2014

Runoff elections not close amid low voter turnout

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Posted: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 9:44 pm

With all 27 precincts in Talladega County reporting, none of the races on Tuesday’s ballot looked to be even close. Turnout for the election was unsurprisingly low with no local races on the ballot and no Democratic runoffs.

A total of 2,178 votes were cast in the county, including absentees. It was not clear how many provisional ballots there were, since these were sealed and will not be opened until next week.

Of Tuesday’s voters in Talladega County, 1,926 voted in Republican runoffs. The remaining ballots were non-partisan, containing only the statewide vote on a Constitutional amendment regarding cotton promotion.

Some 1,375 Talladega voters, or 71.35 percent, voted in favor of the amendment. A total of 552 voted no.

In the race for state Senate District 17, Shay Shelnutt appears to have bested Brett King to succeed Scott Beason in Montgomery. There is no Democratic candidate in the race.

Among the Talladega voters with a say in this election (only two precincts), Shelnutt carried the day with 87 votes, or 65.41 percent, to King’s 46, or 34.59 percent.

The statewide races in Talladega County were also pretty one-sided, and tended to reflect the trends overall.

For secretary of state, John Merrill had a commanding lead over Reese McKinney, 1,218 to 650, or 65.2 percent to 34.8 percent. Statewide, with 29 percent reporting, Merrill was leading 51 percent to 49 percent, according to the Associated Press. The winner of this race squares off against Democrat Lula Albert Kaigler in November.

For state auditor, Sylacauga native Jim Zeigler won 1,429 votes to Dale Peterson’s 449, or 76 to 23 percent. Statewide, the Associated Press called the race with 43 percent of precincts reporting and Zeigler carrying 66 percent of the vote. He faces Miranda Joseph in the general election.

In the contest for Public Service Commissioner Place 2, incumbent and Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind Trustee Terry Dunn lost decisively to challenger Chris “Chip” Beeker Jr., 1,181 to 661, or 64.12 to 35.88 percent. Statewide, with 86 percent reporting, Beeker was ahead by 59 percent to 41 percent.

Contact Chris Norwood at cnorwood@dailyhome.com.

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