Pulaski County unofficial election results were posted online on Tuesday evening. Alongside other Missourians, Pulaski County residents were able to cast their ballots for state and local offices, as well as different measures.
Most Missourians voted no on Proposition A - one of the most controversial ballot measures introduced last year. Despite nearly two-thirds of Missouri residents voting no, State House and State Senate Republicans could reintroduce the measure in 2019 and vote again to make Missouri a right-to-work state.
However, in Pulaski County, residents were split nearly down the middle for Proposition A. The number of votes in favor was 15 votes less than those in opposition. According to the unofficial results posted by the county clerk, the number of votes against Prop. A is 2,517 compared to 2,502 in favor.
The cities of St. Robert and Richland, residents voted no to implementing a use tax. Similar to a sales tax, a use tax would tax online purchases made from out of state retailers such as Amazon. The city of St. Robert counted 176 votes in opposition compared to 136 in favor. This is the second time the city has voted against the use tax, the first being in April earlier this year.
In Richland, 131 voters said no to having a use tax. Along with St. Robert, the two cities may lose out on thousands of dollars going to general revenue funds. It is unknown if the use tax will be reintroduced in 2019.
County Clerk Brent Bassett lost his position to Dave Ernst. Bassett will resign in December, finishing out his term before Ernst takes office. Ernst received approximately 54 percent of the votes, coming in at 2,085. Bassett has been in office for the past eight years. Due to no Democrat candidate running for the same position, Ernst is declared the winner.
Current Presiding Commissioner Gene Newkirk, who ran unopposed, will take on Democratic candidate Sean Wilson in November. Wilson also ran unopposed, receiving 861 votes compared to Newkirk’s 3,263 votes.
Yvonne Reeves Chong also defeated current Democratic Central Committeewoman Clara Ichord after twenty years in the position. Democratic Central Committeeman will also retain his position after defeating Wayne Gifford and Paul Gritter. Chong and Prugh received 328 and 242 votes respectively. Prugh won by a slim margin since Gifford had 228 votes, a 14 vote difference.
For more local positions, some ran uncontested in their respective parties. For the Republican party, Prosecutor Kevin Hillman, County Treasurer Sue Rapone, Circuit Judge Bill Hickle and County Collector Terri Mitchell and Assoc. Circuit Court Probate Div. Judge Michael Hendrick all ran uncontested.
For the Democrat party, Assoc. Circuit Judge Magistrate Div. Colin Long, Assoc. Circuit Judge Probate Div. Brandon Swartz, Prosecuting Attorney candidate Wayne Gifford, Circuit Clerk Rachelle Beasley, all ran uncontested.
However, Prosecutor Kevin Hillman will face Wayne Gifford in November. Assoc. Circuit Court Probate Div. Judge Michael Hendrick will also face his opposition in November.
Continuing with state offices, Republican candidate and Crocker local Don Mayhew defeated Rolla’s Matthew Miller and Crocker’s Bruce Goodrich. Mayhew received approximately 43.7 percent of the votes – just two percent more than Goodrich. Mayhew will face Democrat Matt Heltz, who ran uncontested, in November’s election.
For the State Senate, Republican Candidate Justin Brown defeated State Rep. Diane Franklin and State Rep. Keith Frederick. While Franklin received more votes in Pulaski County, Brown received more votes in other counties. Franklin took 46 percent of the votes in Pulaski County but failed to gain momentum in other counties that make up the district. Brown is set to face Democrat candidate Ryan Dillon, who ran uncontested, in November’s election.
In State Rep. District 122, Republican Steve Lynch ran uncontested in both parties.
In the US. Senator’s race, Pulaski County voted for current attorney general and Republican Josh Hawley with 2,281 votes. Hawley beats out ten other Republican candidates. Hawley is set to face Democrat Claire McCaskill, who has held office since 2007. McCaskill received 834 votes according to the results for Pulaski County.
According to Morning Consult in May 2018, an intelligence rating company, the senator received a low approval rating of just 38 percent. 53 percent also said it is time for a new person.
Statewide, McCaskill raked in approximately 83 percent of all democrat votes compared to Hawley’s 58 percent. According to a New York Times article, Senator McCaskill is one of the most vulnerable senators for losing her seat in Congress.
Pulaski County residents also voted in favor of Vicki Hartzler, the current U.S. House Representative for Missouri’s District Four. Hartzler received 2,882 votes, nearly triple of candidate John Webb’s 957 votes. Democratic candidate Hallie Thompson was also declared the victor, beating out Renee Hoagensen.
State Auditor Nicole Galloway, uncontested in the Democrat party, will face Sandra McDowell. McDowell received almost one-third of the votes state-wide but David Wasinger received more than her in Pulaski County. McDowell received 897 votes compared to Wasinger’s 1,020. McDowell and Galloway are set to continue their campaigns into November.
Other’s included third party candidates from the Green Party, Constitutionalists and the Libertarian Party – the three of which receiving significant lows compared to the two popular parties.
In Pulaski County, only 22 percent of registered voters casted their ballots. According to the results, less than 5,100 ballots were casted out of 22,259 registered voters. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are approximately 53,200 residents living in the area. Pulaski County will vote again in November and have until Oct. 10 to register.