Hazard’s Brandon Smith is the current Representative in state government for Perry County and parts of Harlan County. Representative Smith set his sights on hope for a statewide office in yesterday’s Republican primary. That hope however, didn’t last until the general election after Smith came in last according to unofficial results.
Smith, who did easily win in Perry County, was running in the primary for State Treasurer against Lonnie Napier, Ken Upchurch and Melinda L. Wheeler, also a native of eastern Kentucky. Wheeler is the only Republican who is not currently in the state’s House of Representatives and claimed during her campaign she would abolish the office if elected.
With that claim, Wheeler claimed over 30 percent of the vote just behind the leading vote-getter, Lonnie Napier. Neither candidate received 40 percent of the vote or greater in the unofficial results last night.
On the Democrat side of the State Treasurer primary four candidates vied for the Democrat ticket in the primary. Louisville's L.J. Hollenback took the nomination according to unofficial results.. His opponents were Jack D. Wood, Patrick Weaver and Patrick R. Dunmire.
Perry Countians also voted in the party primaries for other offices as well yesterday. Those votes counted toward the election of candidates seeking offices of Secretary of State, Attorney General and Commissioner of Agriculture.
Republican incumbent Secretary of State, Trey Grayson saw no opposition in the primary. Grayson, the winner of the Republican primary before the election was even held, was first elected to the office in 2003 in his first run for political office.
The Democratic primary was a contest between Dick Robinson of Georgetown, Louisville’s MaDonna J. White and eastern Kentucky’s S. Bruce Hendrickson of Pineville. At press time, Robinson and Hendrickson were too close to call a victor based on unofficial results, neither with greater than 40 percent of the vote.
Also up for election this year is the office of the Attorney General, currently held by Greg Stumbo. The Democrat primary was won by handily according to unofficial results by Louisville's Jack Conway in a contest with Robert V. Bullock. The Republican primary had more competition with four candidates: Jon Larson, Philip C. Kimball, Stan Lee and Tim Coleman all vied for the position. Stan Lee took the nomination in unofficial results.
Perry County also participated in the statewide primary election of the Commissioner of Agriculture. Republican incumbent Richie Farmer, first elected in 2003, faced opposition in the primary from Don Stosberg. Farmer however, easily came out on top with over 85 percent of the vote in unofficial results.
The Democratic primary also only showcased two candidates. David Lynn Williams nudged out David Neville with a majority of votes according to unofficial results. Richie Farmer is now set to face challenger Williams in the general election.
The statewide general election will be held on November 6 of this year.