Friday, May 07, 2010

TOP STORY > >Many voting early

Leader senior staff writer

Early voting for the May 18 primary election continues through May 17, and in this season of political uncertainty, with Sen. Blanche Lincoln in the battle of her political life and with Rep. Vic Snyder and Rep. Marion Berry both retiring, officials expect a larger-than-usual primary turnout for an “off-year” election, according to Juanita Horn, head of the Lonoke County Election Commission.

On Friday afternoon, more than 4,500 ballots were cast. In Lonoke County, the vote was 187 at the Cabot location and 160 at the Lonoke location.

In White County, 648 voters cast their ballots in the first week of early voting.

Lincoln, in her statewide primary race, is challenged from the left by Halter and from the right by D.C. Morrison.

But Morrison’s candidacy is almost certain to force a Democratic primary runoff election June 8 between Lincoln and Halter.

Whoever wins the primary then faces a tough run in November against the winner of the Republican primary, which includes two former state senators and Rep. John Boozman.

In addition to Boozman and state Sens. Kim Hendren and Gilbert Baker, those running for the Republican nomination are Fred Ramey, Randy Alexander, Curtis Coleman, Jim Holt and Conrad Reynolds.

Democrats seeking the nomination for Berry’s soon-to-be-vacant First District seat, which includes Lonoke and White counties, include Steve Bryles, Chad Causey, David Cook, Terry Green, Ben Ponder and Tim Wooldridge.

Seeking the Republican nomination are Rick Crawford and Princella Smith.

Seeking the Democratic nomination for the Second Congressional District seat currently held by Vic Snyder are state Sen. Joyce Elliott, House Speaker Robbie Wills, Patrick Kennedy, John Adams and David Bolling.

Seeking the Republican nomination for that seat are Tim Griffin and Scott Wallace.

In contested Democratic primaries for statewide office, Pulaski County Circuit Clerk Pat O’Brien is in a three-way race with Doris Tate and Mark Wilcox for secretary of state. The winner faces Republican Mark Martin in November.

State Rep. Monty Davenport, L.J. Bryant and Mike Berg seek the nomination for state land commissioner. The winner will face
Republican John M. Thurston in November.

In the Republican primary for lieutenant governor, Donnie Copeland faces Mark Darr, with the winner to face state Sen. Shane Broadway, a Democrat, in November.


In contested primaries in Lonoke County, Assessor Jerry Adams is being challenged by Jim Bailey in the Democratic primary.

The winner will face Republican Jack McNally in November.

County Clerk Dawn Porterfield is being challenged by Rita F. Schmitz in the Democratic primary. The winner will not have an opponent in November.

Former Lonoke County Sheriff Charlie Martin and Steve Rich face off in the Democratic primary for the right to challenge current Lonoke County Sheriff Jim Roberson, a Republican.

Republicans Joe Farrer and Larry Ridgeway face for the District 1 JP seat. The winner will face incumbent JP Jodie Grisham Troutman, a Democrat, and independent Jimmy Hall in November.

In the Republican primary for JP District 2, Gage B. Gilliam is challenging incumbent Janette Minton. There is no Democratic challenger in November.

Larry Odom, the longest serving Republican on the quorum court, is being challenged in the primary by Warren D. Leill for the district 3 JP seat.

District 6 J.P. Alexis Malham, the incumbent, faces Trent Eilts in the Republican primary.

Former JP Richard Kyzer is challenging incumbent Roger Dale Lynch in the Democratic primary for JP District 8.
Dist. 13 JP Mark Edwards is being challenged by former JP Kenny Ridgeway in the Republican primary.

In contested constable races, Bill Hankins, Raymond “Ray” Price and Eugene “Beno” Duke seek the Democratic nomination in Gumwood Township.

In Oak Grove Township, Constable Vincent F. Scarlata faces a challenge from Jerrell Bevill in the Republican primary.


Position 2 Alderman Todd Wheat faces challenger Danny Whitehurst in the Democratic primary.

Also in that primary for JP, Norman Walker seeks to unseat longtime incumbent Raymond Louis Hatton.
In a Democratic primary race to replace O’Brien as Pulaski County circuit clerk, Steve Walden faces Larry Crane.


Lonoke County: Early voting is taking place in Lonoke at the Election Building, 220 Depot St. through May 15. Weekdays, polls will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays, 10 a.m. through 4 p.m. Early voting will continue May 17 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

On Election Day, all polling places will open at 7:30 a.m. and close 7:30 p.m.

Early voting is being held at the Cabot Annex Building as well, according to the Lonoke County Election Commission, but only until today from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.

In Pulaski County, early voting is at nine sites, as usual, but the Jacksonville early voting site has moved from city hall to the community center next door.

Early voting in Sherwood is at the Jack Evans Senior Citizen Center, and in downtown Little Rock at the Pulaski County Regional Building at Broadway and Markham streets.

Early voting will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays through May 15. Early voting continues May 17 at the downtown Little Rock site only, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on May 18, the actual primary, from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. at all sites.