Missouri State Rep. Mike Lair (R-Chillicothe) eked out a win over challenger Dennis McDonald, of Galt, in Tuesday's Republican primary election. Despite vote deficits in Grundy and Linn counties, Lair's stong Livingston County support carried him through to secure another term.
Missouri State Rep. Mike Lair (R-Chillicothe) eked out a win over challenger Dennis McDonald, of Galt, in Tuesday’s Republican primary election. Despite vote deficits in Grundy and Linn counties, Lair’s stong Livingston County support carried him through to secure a fourth term. Lair pocketed a total of 2,824 votes, compared to McDonald’s 2,642 votes, capturing 51.7 percent of the votes cast for that office. Grundy County voters strongly supported their hometown boy, McDonald, with 1,219 votes, compared to Lair’s 792 votes. In Linn County, McDonald secured 611 votes, compared to Lair’s 571 votes. Despite the numbers in these two counties, Livingston County came out strong in favor of Lair, giving him 1,461 votes, compared to McDonald’s 872 votes. “We figured we would be strong in Livingston County and Livingston County came through,” Lair said, shortly after learning of his win. “The anticipation was for this kind of a dog fight. We know each other really well, running on the same ticket... it’s going to be tough. It went right down to the wire.” “I am extremely pleased, because our efforts in Livingston County were to get people out and get them to take a Republican ballot. Lair carried each voting precinct in Livingston County, with his strongest support coming from Chillicothe’s 1st Ward, where 69 percent of the votes gave him the nod. He captured the least amount of support in Green and Mooresville Township, where he captured just 55 percent of the votes cast. Lair is unopposed in November’s general election. Douglas Advances to General Election The Republican primary ticket saw a contest between Ed Douglas and Michael N. Poindexter, both vying for the open seat of Livingston County presiding commissioner. Douglas pocketed 1,555 votes, compared to Poindexter’s 705 votes, translating to 69 percent of the votes cast. Douglas carried all but one voting precinct, with his strongest support coming from Chillicothe’s 1st Ward, capturing 76 percent of the cast. Poindexter’s largest support came from the voting precinct of Fairview and Grand River townships, where he pocketed 55 percent of the votes cast. “I am really pleased that the people seemed to support me,” Douglas stated following the posting of returns at the courthouse Tuesday evening. Douglas said his experience with finance, the highway commission and leadership positions would be beneficial in the office of presiding commissioner. “ That’s one reason I was extremely interested in it,” he said. “Excited about that and hope for the opportunity to do that.” Douglas congratulated his opponent. “He ran a very clean campaign,” he said of Poindexter. “I really admire someone that age who wants to serve and wants to be in politics.” Having won the Republican nod, Douglas will now advance to the general election, where he will face Democrat Billy Peniston and Libertarian Jeffery Curtis Foli. The candidate capturing the most votes in November will be elected presiding commission, filling a vacancy that will be left by Eva Danner Horton, who chose not to seek re-election. Other Local Contests Three townships had committee races on the Democrat ticket. For the 1st Ward committeeman, Ken Lauhoff won by one vote, receiving 33 votes, compared to Gordon Smith’s 32 votes. For Jackson Township committeeman, Todd Rodenberg won with 21 votes, compared to Bill Christison’s 9 votes. For Jackson Township Committeewoman, Kelly Christoper won with 23 votes, compared to Dixie Christison’s 9 votes. Other results Most voters chose Republican ballots, because the biggest local contests were on the Republican ticket. Of all the ballots cast, 2,321 were Republican, 463 were Democrat, 8 were Libertarian, 7 were Constitutional, and 26 were non-partisan. The following results are listed by party: Democrat U.S. Representative (6th District) — W.A. (Bill) Hedge, 145; Edward Dwayne Fields, 92; Gary Lynn Crose, 96. Presiding Commissioner of Livingston County — Billy Peniston, 358 votes; Clerk of the Circuit Court — Brenda Wright, 404; Clerk of the County Commission — Sherry Parks, 412; Recorder of Deeds — Kelly Christopher, 423; Republican State Auditor — Tom Schweich, 1,491; U.S. Representative (6th District) — Kyle Reid, 94; Brian L. Tharp, 83; Sam Graves, 1,780; Christopher Ryan, 178; (Graves won the overall district nod with 77 percent of the votes cast). Clerk of the County Commission — Jennifer Lightner Leach, 1,680; Recorder of Deeds — Dowell Kincaid, 1,683; Prosecuting Attorney — Adam L. Warren, 1,880. Libertarian State Auditor — Sean O’Toole, 8; U.S. Representative (6th District) — Russ Monchil, 8; Presiding County Commissioner — Jeff Foli, 7. Constitution State Auditor — Rodney Farthing, 1. Constitutional Amendments Five Constitutional amendments appeared on Tuesday’s ballot. Amendment 1 (right to farm) — Livingston County voters passed this measure with 62 percent of the votes cast. This measure passed statewide. Amendment 5 (right to arms) — Livingston County voters approved this measure with nearly 74 percent. This measure passed statewide. Amendment 7 (transportation tax) — Livingston County voters approved this measure with 51 percent. This measure failed statewide. Amendment 8 (veterans lottery) — Livingston County voters defeated this measure by just 20 votes (50.37 percent). This measure failed statewide. Amendment 9 (right to e-privacy) — Livingston County voters approved this measure with 76 percent. This measure passed statewide. Right to Farm gets big support in Livingston County, passes with narrow margin statewide Amendment 1, the right to farm amendment, passed in Livingston County with 62 percent of the votes cast. In Livingston County, the measure found its strongest support in the voting precinct of Cream Ridge and Medicine Creek townships, with 81 percent support. The lowest support came from Chillicothe’s 1st Ward, with just 52 percent approval. The unofficial tally from Tuesday's election showed that Amendment 1 carried by a margin of 0.2 percent statewide. The amendment declares farming a right. It is part of an effort to fortify the ag industry against animal-welfare activists and opponents of genetically modified crops, who fear the amendment will be used by corporate farms to escape unwanted regulations, according to the Associated Press.