News From Terre Haute, Indiana

November 5, 2008

Sullivan County votes Repbulican in national election

By Marjorie Hopkins

Sullivan — For the second time in its traditionally Democratic history, Sullivan County voted Republican in the national election. Overall, Democrats saw unexpected upsets, incumbent Republicans lost a few offices, and voter turnout here was exceptionally high, as expected.

John McCain won by a small margin with 4,341 votes to Obama’s 4,282. Democrats won the governor’s race with Jill Long Thompson garnering 4,778 votes to Mitch Daniels’ 3,460 votes.

The Congressional 8th District went to incumbent Democrat Brad Ellsworth with 5,928 votes to Republican Greg Goode’s 2,747 votes.

In county elections Republicans won the Treasurer’s Office, with Beth (Ladson) Swall taking 4,804 votes to Marilyn S. Salesman’s 3,580 votes. Another closely watched contest was the County Commissioner’s race for District 3. Democrat John R. McCammon unseated incumbent Republican Carter Phegley, 4887 votes to 3,573. In District 2, Democrat Timothy W. Abrams won over Republican Brent L. McCammon, 4,992 to 3302. For County Council at large, three Democrats top vote totals: Timothy S. Boles, Richard D. Walters and incumbent Duane Wampler.

In school board elections, Northeast School Board District 1, Robb L. Hester (1,632) won over Nomran R. Santus (1,338). In Northeast District 4, Angela M. Grove (1,174) won over Richard T. Jones (1,057) and Dennis Walker (617). In Northeast District 5, results were: Angela M. Grove, 1,174; Richard T. Jones, 1,057; and Dennis Walker, 617. In Northeast District 5: F. Dane Strahle, 1,640; Belinda J Wrin, 1,211.

In the Southwest School Board District 2, L. June McCammon won with 2,587 votes to Barbara June Rotramel’s 588 votes. In Southwest District 3, the winner was Randy Huff with 2,768 votes to William “Bill” Springer’s 469 votes. And in Southwest, District 4 School Board elections, Jack Hamilton was unopposed.

Shortly after 5 p.m. there was no line at Sullivan County’s largest precinct, Hamilton 2, indicative of the rest of the county. Workers at Hamilton 2 reported that by 9:30 a.m., 160 people had voted. By 5 p.m. a total of 380 had made their way to the polls at Hamilton 2. Voting seemed to be down, workers said, but thought it was because of early voting at the courthouse.

Early voting in Sullivan County was high, according to Shelly Hiatt Parris, clerk of Sullivan Circuit Court. Normal early ballots cast usually total around 800 to 900. This year, 1,388 voted in person. That’s not counting the mail-outs and homebound votes.

“I’ve never seen that many voters lined up around the Rotunda,” Ann Walters said. Walters works in the County Assessor’s office and was talking about the past several days. She has worked at the courthouse for the past seven years.

Sullivan County has a population of around 20,000 with 13,874 active voters. The Clerk’s office shows a total of 1,608 inactive voters, which includes those registered but who haven’t voted in several years or have moved to a new location. Nearly 59 percent of registered voters or 8,995 cast ballots this election. Estimates indicate that usually around 35 to 38 percent of voters go to the polls in Sullivan County.

Race results

Contested Races

U. S. Rep. 8th

Brad Ellsworth (D) 5,928

Greg Goode (R) 2,747

State Rep. 45th

Rick Marshall (D) 4,391

Bruce Borders (R) 4,296

County Treasurer

Marilyn S. Salesman (D) 3,580

Beth (Ladson) Swalls (R) 4,804

County Commissioner

Timothy W. Abrams (D) 4,992

Brent L. McCammon (R) 3,302

County Commissioner

John R. McCammon (D) 4,887

Carter Phegley (R) 3,573

County Council At Large

Timothy S. Boles (D) 4,254

Richard D. Walters (D) 5,336

Duane Wampler (D) 4,929

Earle W. Hoesman (R) 3,262

Henry (Butch) Hayes (I) 2,693

NE School Board

Robb L. Hester 1,632

Norman R. Santus 1,338

NE School Board

Angeloa Grove 1,174

Richard T. Jones 1,057

Dennis Walker 617

NE School Board

F. Dane Strahle 1,640

Belinda J. Wrin 1,211

SW School Board

L. June McCammon 2,587

Barbara June Rotramel 1,956

SW School Board

Randy Huff 2,768

William Bill Springer 1,770


Circuit Court Judge

P.J. Pierson (D) 6,660

Superior Court Judge

Robert E. Springer (D) 6,215

County Coroner

Jeffrey D. Griffith (D) 6,161

County Surveyor

Frederick (Benji) Boyd II (D) 6,265

SW School Board

Jack Hamilton 3,666