Commissioner Patterson, State Rep. Homer re-elected
Kerry Craig | News-Telegram Assistant Editor

Nov. 3, 2004 -- Historically, Hopkins County has been considered Democratic, but the results of Tuesday's general election indicate the county's political leanings have moved across the aisle with voters supporting Republican candidates across the ballot with only one exception.

In early voting, more than 23 percent of the county's 20,041 eligible voters cast their ballots and another 12,129 went to the polls Tuesday.

Voters choosing to vote a straight party ticket indicated a GOP margin of 56.6 percent to 42.6 percent Democrat and 0.67 percent Libertarian.

Only in the race for Precinct 3 County Commissioner between Republican Phillip Anderson and Democratic incumbent Don Patterson did a Democrat receive a majority of votes, giving the incumbent more than 60 percent of the vote in that race.

Patterson received 1,713 votes in his re-election bid to defeat Phillip Anderson, who received 1.059 votes.

Wednesday morning, Patterson said he was happy with the outcome of the election.

"It was a good run race," he said. "Of course, I am glad it came out like it did and I appreciate each and every person that helped me."

Challenger Phillip Anderson said even though he did not win, he was glad he ran and will be back on the ballot again.

"I am glad I was able to get my point of view out and a lot of people heard me," Anderson said. "I am going to run again in four more years."

The Republican candidate also expressed his appreciation to Patterson for running the good race.

"I thank everyone who supported me," Anderson said. "I thank Don for running a good race."

The closest race in the area was between Democratic incumbent State Representative Mark Homer of Paris and Republican challenger Kirby Hollingsworth of Mount Vernon, in which the incumbent's home county came in with the votes needed to win the election.

The overall totals, according to the Texas Secretary of State, gave Mark Homer 24,167 votes to Kirby Hollingsworth's 23,854.

Hopkins County voters supported Hollingsworth in his challenge with a vote of 6,274 to Mark Homer's 5,210 votes.

Hollingsworth also prevailed in Franklin, Delta and Titus Counties.

Returns were delayed until late in the evening Tuesday due to problems with tabulation equipment from Lamar County and the Franklin County vote, which is hand-counted.

Rep. Homer said he had expected a tough race for re-election, but never imagined it would be as close as it turned out to be.

"It was tighter than I ever imagined it would have been," Homer said. "But, a win is a win."

Kirby Hollingsworth said it was a tough race and did not rule out the possibility of seeking a recount of the votes.

"We ran a heck of a race, we won four out of six counties," Kirby Hollingsworth said. "I think it's evident that the people want conservative representatives and I think whoever wins is going to have to be responsive to conservative people."

The Republican candidate said he would wait for direction before making any final decision on a recount.

With the election now behind him, Mark Homer said it was time to look to the next session of the Texas Legislature, which convenes in January, which will face some serious issues.

"Now that it is over, the bottom line is going to work to represent District 3 like I have for the last six years," Homer said. "School finance and how to fund that is going to be at the top of the bill and coupled with that is going to be some genuine property tax relief for homeowners and landowners, and that is going to take some serious effort."

All of the returns from the general election will be unofficial until canvassed by the respective counties and certified by the state.

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