MIAMI – Local voters spoke turning out to cast deciding votes in Ottawa County seats, with all candidates drawing a large number of supporters.
Numbers from the Oklahoma State Election Board show a good voter turnout for Ottawa County's 16 precincts.
“We had about 8,600 total voters for the Nov. 6 midterm. That includes absentee ballots, early in-person, and regular votes cast at the 16 precincts in our county. As of October 29, Ottawa County has 19,947 registered voters. That makes the turnout about 43 percent for the midterm — nearly double what it has been in the past," said an Ottawa County Election Board spokesperson.
District 7 State Representative
Incumbent Democrat Ben Loring retained his seat as Oklahoma State Representative for District 7 by a total of 4,664 votes to Republican opponent William Leonard's 3,851, a difference of 813 votes.
“Barbara and I would like to thank all the voters of House District 7 for getting out and expressing your opinions on how to make our beloved Oklahoma a better place to live, work, learn and raise a family, “ Loring said. “I also want to thank Will Leonard for wanting to get involved and working for what he believes will do that also. I appreciate the way he personally ran his campaign, keeping the conversation on issues, and giving the voters a choice. We agreed on many things. As a state and as a nation, now that the mid-terms are over, we likewise need to focus on the common ground that can help us move forward, and I pray that we can work together in a spirit of compromise and mutual respect on the issues where we don’t agree, so that we can achieve what is in the best interests of all Oklahomans.
"I humbly express to you what a honor it has been to serve as your Representative just as it will be to do so again for another two years. I hope that I am able to serve your best interests with dignity and honor. But, I want to reiterate, that I fully intend for this to be my last two years as your Representative, as I intend to term-limit myself. So, for anyone, that may be interested in running two years from now, I would be most willing to talk with you and offer whatever insights I can as to how things really work at 23rd and Lincoln."
"Finally, I want to thank all the workers that helped with the campaign. I cannot, express enough my appreciation for your work and your encouragement. Thanks to two of my biggest friends and supporters, John Lomax who served as my campaign Chairman and Joyce Parmley, campaign Treasurer. I want to thank all the legislators that helped “break me in” and friends that I have had the chance to work with, both here and in OKC. Most of the lobbyists are a great pleasure to work with, and the House legislative staff is tops. I especially thank my favorite office mate, Johnnie, my seat mates, David and Claudia and my L.A.s Kirsten, Josh and especially Louise. You made things easy. And most of all, I want to thank my beloved Barbara, David and Ian for standing strong through all you had to go through, and my steadfast God.”
“This race provided an amazing experience, one that I will never forget. I have had the opportunity to meet some amazing people and learn a lot about this amazing place I have the privilege of calling home,” Leonard said. “It was a close race, that was ran, as agreed upon in the beginning by my opponent and I, as a gentleman's race. It was clean and respectable, I thank him for that. I want to say thank you to all of my supporters. We worked hard, now it is time to rest up. We have another race coming around the corner. Again, thank you for your support.”
Ottawa County Associate District Judge
A non-partisan battle for the Ottawa County Associate District Judge seat was won by Jennifer Ellis McAffrey, receiving 4,075 votes to Douglas Pewitt's 3,824 votes received, a difference of 251 votes.
“My family and I would like to thank each and every person who contributed to my success in this race, “ McAffrey said. “I am truly humbled by the support we've received from the community throughout this past year. The campaign process can be taxing at times, and I am eternally grateful for the help and encouragement we received along the way. My opponent ran a very strong campaign, and I wish he and his family nothing but the best. With the election behind us, I'm ready to focus my energy on serving as your Associate District Judge. I'm excited to take on this role with the passion and enthusiasm it deserves. Thank you for trusting me with this awesome responsibility.”
“I’m grateful to the many persons who helped and supported my campaign. Thank you all. It’s been a pleasure to meet so many new friends and to get reacquainted with so many old friends. I’d like to congratulate my partner Dave Crutchfield on his being elected Associate District Judge of Delaware County. The law office will remain open. Again, thank you to all who were supportive of this campaign,” Pewitt said.
Ottawa County Commissioner District No. 1
It was a close race for Ottawa County's new District No. 1 County Commissioner Democrat Mike Furnas by a vote of 1,413, just 17 more votes than Republican opponent Mike Moore's 1,396.
“I would like to thank my family, friends and all of the loyal supporters that assisted me in my campaign efforts and went to the polls three times in the past few months to cast their votes for me," Furnas said. “I am honored to have been elected Ottawa County Commissioner for District One. It is exciting to have the opportunity to serve the people in my community and join all of the hard working county employees who are already doing their best for our citizens. In closing I wish to thank my opponent Mike Moore for confirming that we exited this election just as we went into it, ‘as friends and neighbors.’”
“I want to thank everyone for your support in the election,” Moore posted on Facebook.
The numbers from the Oklahoma State Election Board for Ottawa County show a similar division of voters.
In the Governor's race, Ottawa County voters cast 4,752 votes for the winner Republican Kevin Stitt, 3,502 votes for Democrat Drew Edmondson, and 271 votes for Libertarian Chris Powell.
In the Lt. Governors' race, Ottawa County voters cast 5,290 votes for the winner Republican Matt Pinnell, 2,818 votes for Democrat Anastasia Pittman, and 353 votes for Independent Ivan Holmes.
State Auditor and Inspector
In the Oklahoma State Auditor and Inspector race, Ottawa County voters cast 6,048 for winner Republican Cyndy Byrd,and 1,765 for Libertarian John Yeutter.
In the Oklahoma Attorney General race, Ottawa County voters cast 5,451 for winner Republican Mike Hunter, and 2, 970 for Democrat Mark Myles.
In the Oklahoma State Treasurer race, Ottawa County voters cast 5,833 votes for winner Republican Randy McDaniel and 1,964 for Independent Charles de Coune.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
In the Oklahoma Superintendent of Public Instruction race, Ottawa County voters cast 4,650 votes for winner Republican Joy Hofmeister, 3,231 votes for Democrat John Cox and 576 votes for Independent Larry Huff.
In the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner race, Ottawa County voters cast 5,229 votes for winner Republican Glen Mulready and 3,149 votes for Democrat Kimberly Fobbs.
In the race for Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner, Ottawa County voters cast 4,940 votes for winner Republican Bob Anthony, 3,018 votes for Democrat Ashley Nicole McCray and 443 for Independent Jackie Short.
United States Representative District 2
In the race for Oklahoma United States Representative District 2, Ottawa County voters cast 5,116 votes for winner Republican Markwayne Mullin, 2,850 votes for Democrat Jason Nichols, 333 votes for Independent John Foreman, 175 votes for Libertarian Richard Castaldo.
Ottawa County voters cast 4,465 no votes, and 3,472 votes for the proposal in State Question No.793 on optometrist or opticians practicing in retail establishments. The proposal failed with a total of 585,355 Oklahoma voters casting no votes to 579,741 voting yes.
Ottawa County voters cast 5,948 yes votes, and 2,337 no votes the proposal in State Question No.794 regarding the establishment of certain rights for crime victims. Oklahoma voters passed the measure with a resounding yes vote of 904,308 versus a no vote of 254,966.
Ottawa County voters cast 4,527 no votes and 3,703 yes votes for the measure in State Question No. 798 which proposed a single ticket run for electing the state's Governor and Lt. Governor. Oklahoma voters cast 622,233 no votes and 528,110 votes keeping the same voting manner in place.
Ottawa County Voters cast 5,334 no votes and 2,850 yes votes for State Question No. 800 to fund a new Oklahoma Vision Fund. Oklahoma voters struck down the measure with 652,984 no votes and 488,135 yes votes cast.
Ottawa County voters cast 4,614 no votes and 3,678 yes votes for measure in State Question No. 801 to expand the uses of certain ad valorem taxes levied by a school district. Oklahoma voters cast 581,504 no votes against the measure striking it down and 572,151 yes votes.
"We are extremely pleased with voter turnout in yesterday’s election. With nearly 1.2 million votes cast and turnout over 56 percent, this election ranks head and shoulders above any gubernatorial year turnout since at least 1986, and by a wide margin. Good voter participation is a sign of a healthy democracy, and Oklahomans should be proud of their engagement in the election process this year. We have set modern records for the number of candidates to file for office, turnout in a gubernatorial year primary election and turnout in a gubernatorial year general election. This is a banner year for elections in Oklahoma,” Oklahoma State Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax said.