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Brown/McCarty victory a stunner

Todd easily wins reelection over newcomer Cave

While school board member Bob Todd had the largest margin of victory in Tuesday's election, it was the voting-out of incumbents on the Fayette County Board of Commissioners that spoke the loudest.

Post 5 incumbent Eric Maxwell was defeated 6,005 to 5,008 as political newcomer Allen McCarty took 54.26 percent of the vote.

Perhaps even more significant was the defeat of Post 4 incumbent and commission chairman Jack Smith, who was handed a loss by former Peachtree City Mayor Steve Brown. Brown had been defeated at the polls in two previous elections, first losing his mayoral re-election bid to newcomer Harold Logsdon in 2005 and then losing a bid for the Georgia House of Representatives to Peachtree City attorney Matt Ramsey.

Brown managed to redeem his political career, partnering with McCarty in a campaign that centered heavily on opposition to the West Fayetteville Bypass. It remains to be seen, however, if they will be able to convince another sitting commissioner to also kill the bypass, as three votes are the minimum required for any action on the five-member board.

Board of Education member Todd won re-election handily over newcomer Charlie Cave, as Todd took nearly 62 percent of the vote for the Post 4 seat. Todd took 6,785 votes to Cave's 4,232.

One seat on the BoE remains unclaimed, as Republican Sam Tolbert will be facing off against Democratic challenger Laura Burgess in November's general election for the Post 5 seat.

At the polls Tuesday, a bid to repurpose tax dollars for redevelopment of older commercial properties in Fayetteville was defeated 890-798.

Not quite 28 percent of the county's registered voters participated in Tuesday's primary election, with 19,276 ballots cast among 69,119 registered voters. The final voter turnout was determined to be 27.89 percent.

Among races for the Georgia legislature, Fayetteville's Emory Wilkerson lost a bid to unseat incumbent District 74 Democrat Roberta Abdul-Salaam, who took 62.6 percent of the vote. Incumbent District 34 Senator Valencia Seay held off two challengers to claim 52.1 percent of the vote in the Democratic race, defeating Travis Spruill and former Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill. Despite his controversial one-term reign as sheriff, Hill managed 39.4 percent of the vote district-wide with 4,757 supporters to Seay's 6,294 votes.

Those were the only locally contested races in the legislature in the primary.

In statewide races, Fayette Republican voters resoundingly supported Karen Handel for the party's nomination as governor. Handel won 38 percent of the vote here with Nathan Deal finishing second with 24.35 percent. The two are heading to a statewide runoff election Aug. 10.

On the Democratic side, Gov. Roy Barnes handily carried Fayette County with 73.93 percent of the vote as he cruised to victory statewide for the Democratic nomination. In November Barnes will face the winner of the Handel-Deal runoff.

Also headed for a runoff statewide are:
• Gail Buckner (35.1 percent) and Georganna Sinkfield (22.6 percent) in the Democratic nomination for Secretary of State
• Sam Olens (39.9 percent) and Preston W. Smith (30.6 percent) in the Republican nomination for Attorney General;
• Republicans Ralph Hudgens (20.7 percent) and Maria Sheffield (19.6 percent) for their party's nomination for state Insurance Commissioner.

Georgia voters also decided a number of other statewide races in Tuesday's primary:
• Carol Porter won the Democratic nomination for Lieutenant Governor with 69.7 percent of the vote. She will face Republican incumbent Casey Cagle in November's general election;
• Brian Kemp won the Republican nomination for Secretary of State with 59.2 percent of the vote. He will face the winner of the Buckner-Sinkfield runoff.
• Michael Thurmond handily won a two-man race for the Democratic nomination for a seat in the U.S. Senate. Thurmond in November will face incumbent Johnny Isakson.
• Ken Hodges won the Democratic nomination for Attorney General with 65.5 percent of the vote over challenger Rob Telihet. He will face the winner of the Olens-Smith runoff in November.
• John Barge won the Republican nomination for State School Superintendent with 51.9 percent of the vote. He will face Democrat Jim Martin, who won a three-way race for the Democratic nomination with 54.9 percent of the vote.

Check the following link for the Fayette County Election Office's unofficial final tallies:

http://www.fayettecountyga.gov/elections/results-1.htm

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