WILLIAMSON – Several Democratic nominations were up for grabs in the Tuesday Primary Election in Mingo County.
Those offices included county commissioner, sheriff, circuit clerk, county clerk and assessor.
Also up for grabs were two House of Delegate nominees that represent different parts of the county and a nominee for the W.Va. State Senate.
In the Mingo County Commission race, young Thomas Taylor upset incumbent John Mark Hubbard 3,358 to 2,818. Marvin Vernatter had 284 votes in the commissioner.
In the three-way race for sheriff, incumbent James Smith defeated challengers Barry Blair and Earl Spence. Smith received 3,299 votes, while Blair, the current Chief of Police for Williamson, had 1,422 votes and Spence, the Chief of Police for Delbarton, garnered 2,048 votes.
In the circuit clerk’s race, it was a crowded ballot with four people vying for that nomination. Former sheriff Lonnie Hannah won the nomination with 2,488 votes. Camilla Walters Ellis brought in 1,881 votes, while newcomers Billy Sammons had 1,654 votes and Brandy (Baisden) Haney acquired 710 votes.
In the Mingo County Clerk’s race, longtime politician and incumbent Big Jim Hatfield won the nomination by just 19 votes, with a total of 3,312, while challenger Yogi Croaff, a longtime court marshal security guard at the courthouse, garnered 3,293 votes.
In the contest for prosecuting attorney, incumbent Teresa Maynard was upset by challenger Jonathan “Duke” Jewell by a margin of 3,683 votes to x2,759 for Maynard.
In the assessor’s race incumbent Ramona Mahon defeated challenger Amber Bishop. The vote totals were 4,954 for Mahon and 1,445 for Bishop. Mahon had the largest vote total in the county.
In the race for the District 20, incumbent Justin Marcum faced a solid challenger in Ronnie Blankenship. The vote totals in Mingo County were 2,367 for Marcum and 1,769 for Blankenship. This district includes the northern part of Mingo County and the Holden area of Logan County.
Marcum will be challenged in the November General Election by Mike Baisden of Williamson who was unopposed.
In the District 21 House of Delegates seat, Gilbert Mayor Phyllis White faced Vivian Livingood. In Mingo County, White led by 1,285 to 1,157, while totals from other counties were still not in at press-time. White was appointed to fill her husband’s seat, Harry Keith White, after he resigned. She served in her first legislative assembly this past session. This district takes in the southern part of Mingo County and parts of Wyoming and McDowell Counties.
White will go up against Republican Mark Dean of Verner in November, who defeated Roger Stacy of Jolo in the Republican side of the ballot.
In the W. Va. State Senate race for District Six, Rocky Seay of Princeton ran against Brandon Barker of Chattaroy (Williamson). Barker had 2,773 votes in his home county. Seay tallied 875 in Mingo, but the complete totals from the other counties were not available at press-time. The winner will go up against Republican Chandler Swope of Bluefield, who was unopposed, in November. This district includes parts of Wayne, Mingo, McDowell and Mercer Counties.
Jimmy Webb of Chattaroy was unopposed for County Surveyor with 4,348.
The vote totals were tabulated after the polls closed at 7:30 p.m. in the basement of the Mingo County Courthouse. These are unofficial totals. Official totals will be released after a canvas of votes in the upcoming days.
(Editor’s Note: The Williamson Daily News will have follow-up stories on some of the hotly contested races in the coming days.)
(Kyle Lovern is the Managing Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242, ext. 2277 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)