Tuesday’s primary sets the stage for November

Tuesday's primary sets the stage for November by David Lias Ralph Westergaard and Heath Nelson, both of Wakonda, and Thomas Vogel, Vermillion, were the top three vote getters Tuesday in a hotly contested primary election for the Clay County Commission Democratic nomination.

Westergaard, an incumbent on the commission, received 29 percent, 261 votes, followed by Nelson's 28.33 percent, 255 votes and Vogel's 21.55 percent, 194 votes.

Vogel edged William P. O'Connor of Burbank by just four votes to win the county commission nomination for November's general election. O'Connor received 21.11 percent, 190 votes.

Voter turnout was sparse Tuesday. Among Clay County's 6,627 eligible voters, only 8.9 percent, 592, cast ballots.

A Republican primary election wasn't necessary for county commission Tuesday. Three Republicans had filed petitions: incumbent William Willroth Sr., Mary E. Jensen and Dick Brown, all of Vermillion. They were automatically nominated, and will face Westergaard, Nelson and Vogel in the Nov. 7 general election.

Clay County voters will be asked to choose three of the six candidates in November.

No one is opposing Clay County Treasurer Catherine Powell. She will automatically serve another term in office.

State's Attorney Tami Bern will face opposition in November. Creighton Thurman of Vermillion has filed a petition to seek election to the state's attorney office as an independent candidate.

No primary election was needed for District 17 House or District 17 Senate.

Democrats B.J. Nesselhuf and Maxine Johnson, both of Vermillion, have filed nominating petitions for the district's two House seats. Incumbent

publican Representatives Judy Clark, Vermillion and H. Junior Engbrecht, Marion are seeking re-election.

Republican Donna J. Schafer and incumbent Democrat John J. Reedy, both of Vermillion, have filed petitions for District 17 Senate.

Democrats in Clay County followed a statewide trend and helped Curt Hohn, 49, of Aberdeen, secure the Democratic congressional nomination Tuesday.

In Clay County, Hohn received 66 percent, 227 votes, easily defeating his two opponents, Steve Sandven, who received 30 percent, 102 votes and Raymond Osloond Sr., who received 4 percent, 15 votes. Hohn received 56 percent, 12,822 votes, in the Democratic primary race for U.S. House statewide.

Clay County also followed statewide trends in the Republican presidential primary. George W. Bush topped the field in that race, receiving 78 percent, 35,504 votes statewide.

In Clay County, Bush received 79 percent, 163 votes.

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