News From Terre Haute, Indiana

November 5, 2008

Parke County incumbents retain their seats

By Crystal Garcia

Parke County incumbents retained their seats in Tuesday’s election.

Republican County At-large Councilmen Dale Gerrish and John Pratt will be joined by fellow Republican J.B. Butler, a newcomer who received more votes than Gerrish and Pratt. The three GOP candidates won over the three Democrats in that race.

Overall for the county, more than 7,000 of the 12,282 registered voters cast their ballots, giving the county a 57.65 percent turnout.

George Nicholas, Republican Party chairman and county commissioner, said Butler campaigned the hardest of all the Republicans.

“He was out there hitting it,” since the primaries, Nicholas said.

Nicholas retained his own seat, receiving 3,816 votes to Democratic challenger David Burns’ 2,964 votes.

This will be Nicholas’ sixth term, he said, noting no one has been elected as commissioner for more than two terms before.

Burns was not disappointed by the loss.

“I’m glad I got to get out and tell my story,” he said, “and may be get some people thinking.”

Democrat Mary Alice Gregg, another incumbent, retained her seat as treasurer in a close race, receiving 3,546 votes to Republican challenger Carl Huxford’s 3,355. Huxford currently serves as recorder, but served as the treasurer for two terms before becoming recorder.

Mary Jo Harkrider, Democrat, will serve as the new recorder as she received 3,765 votes over Republican challenger Julia Leonard-Bigger’s 3,060. Nicholas said he thought Harkrider campaigned the hardest of the Democrats.

While he could not speak specifically about all the 17 precincts, Nicholas said he hadn’t heard of any major problems in the voting process Tuesday.

Crystal Garcia can be reached at (812) 231-4271 or crystal.garcia@tribstar.com.



Race results

Contested Races

Treasurer

Mary Alice Gregg* (D) 3,546

Carl Huxford (R) 3,355

Recorder

Mary Jo Harkrider (D) 3,765

Julia Bigger (R) 3,060

Commissioner

David Burns (D) 2,964

George Nicholas* (R) 3,816

County Council

Carolyn Burns (D) 2,822

Doug Falls (D) 2,730

Dale Ryan (D) 2,995

J.B. Butler (R) 3,847

Dale Gerrish* (R) 3,616

John Pratt* (R) 3,621

*denotes incumbent