electionresults1

Voters turned up Tuesday to one of five vote centers in Wabash County, including Zion Lutheran Church.

On Tuesday evening, the Wabash County Clerk’s office announced the initial primary election results.

Only a handful of races were contested. Most races were unchallenged, with many having only one candidate, usually Republicans. Many local races had no Democratic Party candidate on the ballot.

In Wabash County, voter turnout was 15.86 percent, with 3,304 out of 20,816 local registered voters turning out to the polls. In all, 2,418 voters cast a ballot on Election Day, 110 submitted a paper absentee ballot and 776 voted walk-in absentee.

By contrast, Wabash County Clerk Lori Draper said the total of early voters and mail-in absentees in the 2018 primary was 1,594 and the Election Day total was 4,468. The total turnout for the primary election in 2018 was 29.88 percent.

In the primary election, voters had to declare which party they were requesting a ballot for, either Democratic or Republican. In the general election, voters of all parties will vote on the winning candidates from the primary election.

Incumbent Sen. Todd Young, R-Indiana, will face Democratic challenger Thomas M. McDermott, Jr. As of Friday morning, the Indiana Election Division reported Young had 353,419 votes (100 percent) in the Republican primary, and McDermott had 148,498 votes (100 percent) in the Democratic primary.

Incumbent Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Indiana, will face Democratic challenger Paul D. Steury. As of Friday morning, the Indiana Election Division reported Walorski had 36,901 votes (100 percent) in the Republican primary, and Steury had 11,680 votes (100 percent) in the Democratic primary.

In the State Representative District 22 race, the winner of the Republican primary match-up between Curt Nisley and Craig Snow will face Democratic challenger Dee M. Moore. As of Wednesday morning, the Indiana Election Division reported Snow had 6,631 votes (73.1 percent) to Nisly’s 2,444 votes (26.9 percent).

In the State Representative District 50 race, the Republican primary match-up was between incumbent Rep. Daniel J. (Dan) Leonard and current Wabash County Councilmember Lorissa Sweet.

Sweet defeated Leonard and will face Democratic challenger Tammari L. (Tammy) Ingalls. As of Wednesday morning, the Indiana Election Division reported Sweet had 4,091 votes (56.6 percent) to Leonard’s 3,140 votes (43.4 percent).

The chair of the Rules Committee in the Indiana House of Representatives, Leonard drew criticism from social conservatives for his frequent role in blocking proposals from legislators like Nisly and Rep. John Jacob, R-Indianapolis, – either by raising procedural objections or not taking up bills assigned to the committee, according to reporting by the Associated Press.

While Nisly and Jacob both lost their primary races to candidates backed by funding and support from the Indiana state Republican Party’s campaign apparatus, Sweet notched a major victory despite being out-fundraised by Leonard.

On election night, the outcome quickly came into focus as results rolled in. Sweet said the victory hadn’t yet sunk in.

“I was like, ‘I don’t know whether to laugh or cry or throw up,’” Sweet said. “It’s a mixed bag of emotions. I am still processing.”

One major trend in the results was the breakdown by county. While Leonard won a slight majority at home with 53 percent of the votes in Huntington County, Sweet earned more than 70 percent of votes in Wabash County. That margin was large enough to give her an easy victory.

The Republican candidate in the 50th district has historically won handily in the general, with Leonard receiving more than 70 percent of the votes in each of the last three cycles.

Going forward, Sweet said that she doesn’t expect much to change in regards to her campaign strategy.

“I don’t think a whole lot is going to change. It’s just going to be the speed at which I do it,” Sweet said. “My whole campaign has been getting to know the voters. It’s going to the doors. It’s having meet and greets. It’s meeting people for coffee, sitting down at kitchen tables. It’s been a very personal campaign, listening to people’s stories and concerns. I want to continue to do that up until the general election. If I am going to represent these people, I need to know what’s important to them, so that’s what I plan to do between now and then.”

As for how she plans to win over voters that backed Leonard in the primary, Sweet said she wants to invite them to have conversations with her.

“There will be some that just refuse to support me, and that’s on them,” Sweet said. “If they believe what they say they believe, then they should be able to come on board.”

Leonard, who attended the Huntington County Republican Party’s election night watch party at VFW Post 2689 in Huntington, addressed the crowd in attendance after the race was called.

“I’m finishing up my 20th year in the statehouse. I just want to thank everybody. The Republican Party of Huntington County has been fantastic. Marla [Foster, chair of the Huntington County GOP], you’ve done a great job – tremendously supportive from every aspect that I can think of. Everybody’s just been wonderful,” Leonard said. “I ran a furniture store here for 40 years; I made my living in Huntington. People in Huntington have been so supportive of me and what I’ve stood for.”

Later, Leonard said that while he’s disappointed to lose after two decades in office, “the voters have spoken.”

“I’ve had a good run. I’ve been in the statehouse for 20 years; I like to think that I’ve done a good job,” Leonard said. “Maybe the voters just think it’s time for a change, and if that’s the case, then that’s the system.”

Regarding a possible endorsement of Sweet in the general election, Leonard said he’d “think about it,” adding that “I think Republicans have to support Republicans as long as they’re reasonable.”

When asked about what advice he’d have for Sweet in Indianapolis, he brought back up a frequent mantra from the campaign: the necessity of compromise.

“You never get 100 percent of what you want, and it’s better to have 60 or 70 percent of what you want than nothing,” Leonard said. “Hopefully she’ll do a good job; I wish her the best. It takes compromise; it takes patience; it takes dealing with people.”

Wabash County Results Republican Party

U.S. Senator

Todd Young: 2,400 votes (100 percent)

U.S. Representative District 2

Jackie Walorski: 2,475 votes (100 percent)

State Senate District 17

Andy Zay: 2,234 votes (100 percent)

State Representative District 22

Curt Nisly: 69 votes (37.5 percent)

Craig Snow: 115 votes (62.5 percent)

State Representative District 50

Daniel J. (Dan) Leonard: 806 votes (29.53 percent)

Lorissa Sweet: 1,923 votes (70.47 percent)

Judge of the 27th Circuit Court

Robert R. McCallen, III: 2,577 votes (100 percent)

Prosecuting Attorney of the 27th Circuit

William C. Hartley Jr.: 2,380 votes (100 percent)

Circuit Court Clerk

Lori Draper: 2,571 votes (100 percent)

County Recorder

Eric Rish: 2,351 votes (100 percent)

County Sheriff

Ryan Baker: 2,351 votes (100 percent)

County Assessor

Kelly Schenkel: 2,536 votes (100 percent)

County Commissioner District 2

Jeff Dawes: 2,488 votes (100 percent)

County Council District 1

Matthew J. Mize: 504 votes (100 percent)

County Council District 2

Barbara Pearson: 682 votes (100 percent)

County Council District 3

Sam Hann: 446 votes (100 percent)

County Council District 4

Kyle M. Bowman: 804 votes (100 percent)

Chester Township Trustee

Becca T. Melton: 424 votes (100 percent)

Chester Township Board (vote for three)

Chad M. West: 431 votes (100 percent)

Lagro Township Trustee

Andrew Delong: 262 votes (100 percent)

Lagro Township Board (vote for three)

Beth E. Gillespie: 254 votes (52.59 percent)

Gary W. Hunter Sr.: 229 votes (47.41 percent)

Liberty Township Trustee

Debra Dale: 185 votes (100 percent)

Liberty Township Board (vote for three)

Jon Gillespie: 165 votes (33.07 percent)

Ron Huston: 166 votes (33.27 percent)

Patty Lengel-Godfroy: 168 votes (33.67 percent)

Noble Township Trustee

Lori Harnish: 1,086 votes (100 percent)

Noble Township Board (vote for three)

Brenda Hegel: 965 votes (32.43 percent)

Steven Kirtlan: 1,077 votes (36.19 percent)

William Plummer: 934 votes (31.38 percent)

Paw Paw Township Trustee

Ashley Cordes: 127 votes (100 percent)

Paw Paw Township Board (vote for three)

Brian D. Baker: 112 votes (33.23 percent)

Scott Dawes: 113 votes (33.53 percent)

Mike Schuler: 112 votes (33.23 percent)

Pleasant Township Board (vote for three)

Stan Bagley: 142 votes (32.64 percent)

Marthene Burnau: 142 votes (32.64 percent)

David M. Hawkins: 151 votes (34.71 percent)

Waltz Township Trustee

Michael A. Ruse: 173 votes (100 percent)

Waltz Township Board (vote for three)

Tim Drake: 163 votes (34.17 percent)

Megan L. Henderson: 157 votes (32.91 percent)

Lyman Lee Smith: 157 votes (32.91 percent)

State Convention Delegate (vote for 12)

Matthew Burlingame: 1,507 votes (5.79 percent)

William (Alex) Downard: 1,374 votes (5.28 percent)

Lori Draper: 2,372 votes (9.12 percent)

Mark Draper: 2,124 votes (8.16 percent)

Bobi Gephart: 1,759 votes (6.76 percent)

Nate Gephart: 1,802 votes (6.92 percent)

Amanda Hann: 1,919 votes (7.37 percent)

Sam Hann: 1,942 votes (7.46 percent)

William (Bill) Konyha: 1,588 votes (6.1 percent)

Nicholas Kopkey: 1,647 votes (6.33 percent)

Jennifer Long-Dillon: 1,917 votes (7.37 percent)

Russell Reahard: 1,724 votes (6.62 percent)

David G. Roe: 1,522 votes (5.85 percent)

Nanceylon (Nan) Roe: 910 votes (3.5 percent)

Lorissa Sweet: 1,916 votes (7.36 percent)

Democratic Party

U.S. Senator

Thomas M. McDermott, Jr.: 306 votes (100 percent)

U.S. Representative District 2

Paul D. Steury: 293 votes (100 percent)

State Senate District 22

Dee M. Moore: 16 votes (100 percent)

State Representative District 50

Tammari L. (Tammy) Ingalls: 295 votes (100 percent)

County Commissioner District 2

Travis Leon Hendricks: 295 votes (100 percent)

Pleasant Township Trustee

Rebecca (Becky) Ann Warmuth: 17 votes (100 percent)

Precinct Committeeman Noble 3

Teresa S. Kattau: 14 votes (100 percent)

Precinct Committeeman Noble 4

Chad Harris: 16 votes (100 percent)

Precinct Committeeman Waltz

Tammari L. (Tammy) Ingalls: 13 votes (100 percent)

State Convention Delegate (vote for six)

Travis L. Hendricks: 258 votes (32.13 percent)

Tammari L. (Tammy) Ingalls: 290 votes (36.11 percent)

Jeffery J. Thompson: 255 votes (31.76 percent)

Rob Burgess, Wabash Plain Dealer editor, may be reached by email at rburgess@wabashplaindealer.com. Brett Stover, Huntington Herald-Press editor, may be reached by email at bstover@h-ponline.com.