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Whitehead, Jackson carry McDuffie, runoff is July 17

More than 2,200 voters cast ballots in Tuesday's Special Election in McDuffie County for the 10th District Congressional seat and 24th District State Senate seat. Locally, voters supported Evans resident Jim Whitehead for Congress and Winfield's Bill Jackson for the Senate seat.

In Warren County, meanwhile, where there was only one race to consider - that of state senator, Mr. Jackson received 12 of the 19 votes cast By voters in the only precinct having to vote in the election, according to Warren County Probate Judge Janice Thigpen. Mrs. Thigpen said only 21 percent of the 87 registered votes actually voted in the special election.

Turning back to McDuffie County, Mr. Whitehead received a total of 1,307 votes or 59.17 percent of the votes for Congress, while Mr. Jackson was the favorite among three other candidates, receiving a total of 1,296 votes or 61.80 percent. Both candidates are Republicans.

A total of 2,240 persons or 21.08 percent cast ballots in the county, according to McDuffie County Elections Director Phyllis Wheeler. The county had 10,626 eligible registered voters, Ms. Wheeler said.

Mr. Whitehead had served the district as the former state senator before deciding to resign from the post to seek the unexpired term of the late Congressman Charlie Norwood, who also was a Republican from Columbia County.

Mr. Jackson is not new to the political arena either. He has served as a former member of the Columbia County Board of Education and later was elected the Georgia House of Representatives. After winning Tuesday's election with 62.6 percent of the district vote, Mr. Jackson said he's ready to get back to Atlanta.

"We've run real good all over the district. I'm really excited about that and humbled By that," Mr. Jackson said, adding "I have a lot of friends up there (in the state legislature), so I can be welcomed real fast."

Meanwhile, there's more work to be done in the Congressional race. Mr. Whitehead now faces either James Marlow or Paul Broun in a runoff on Tuesday, July 17. With several precints still out Wednesday morning, Mr. Whitehead received 43.5 percent of the vote while Dr. Broun had 20.7 percent and Mr. Marlow had 20.3 percent of the district-wide vote. Dr. Broun and Mr. Marlow were separated By just 187 votes.

Evita Paschall, an Augusta area lawyer, who grew up in Thomson and attended schools in McDuffie County, received a total of 461 votes or 20.87 percent. Mrs. Paschall, who has a number of family members still living here, ran as a Democrat.

Other candidates faired the following way in the race for the 10th U.S. House seat:

Dr. Broun, a Republican, 178 votes or 8.06 percent;

Denise Freeman, a Democrat, 76 votes or 3.44 percent;

Bill Greene, a Republican, 16 votes or 0.72 percent;

Mr. Marlow, a Democrat, 132 votes or 5.98 percent;

Mark Myers, a Republican, 14 votes or 0.63 percent;

Nate Pulliam, a Republican, 11 votes or 0.50 percent;

Jim Sendelbach, a Libertarian, 5 votes or 0.23 percent; and

Erik Underwood, a Republican, 8 votes or 0.36 percent.

In the State Senate race:

Lee Benedict, a Republican, 79 votes or 3.77 percent;

Brett McQuire, a Republican, 168 votes or 8.01 percent; and

Scott C. Nichols, a Democrat, 551 votes or 26.28 percent.

Morris News Service reports were used in this article.

Web posted on Thursday, June 21, 2007

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