Local voters have choices on Nov. 4 ballots

By FAITH HUFFMAN, News-Telegram News Editor

Oct. 20, 2008 - Early voting in the Nov. 4 general election began today at Sulphur Springs Public Library. A number of local races are on the ballot for voters to decide.

Among the challenged are three school districts' board of trustees seats, county sheriff, two county commissioners' seats and the 62nd Judicial District Judge post, District 3 State Representative and District 4 United States Representative.

Democrat Mark Homer will square off against Republican Kirby Hollingsworth for the State Rep. of District 3.

Democrat incumbent Scott McDowell is challenged by Erwin A. Cain, a Republican, for the 62nd Judicial District Judge post.

Incumbent Ralph Hall (Rep.) is challenged by Democrat Glenn Melancon and Libertarian Fred Annett for District 4 U.S. Rep.

In the county, incumbent Beth Wisenbaker, a Republican, is challenged by Democrat John W. "J.W." Ragan for the Precinct 1 Commissioner post, and Republican Ronald Reed challenges incumbent Don Patterson, a Democrat, for the Precinct 3 Commissioner slot. Democrat incumbent Butch Adams is challenged by Republican Norman Sanders for Hopkins County Sheriff.

In Miller Grove, five people compete for four slots on the school's board of trustees. They are Doug Hall, Lewis Russell, Johnny Burns, Eric Mabe and Rolanda Hasten. The will go to the four candidates receiving the most votes. Miller Grove Independent School District voters will also be asked to vote on a proposition "approving the ad valorem tax rate of 1.32 per $100" for the current school year, a $0.13 increase.

Sulphur Bluff voters will choose four of the six candidates who signed up to serve as trustees on the school board. Candidates include Toney Hurley, Billy Emerson, Jimmie Emerson, Terry Goldsmith, Russell VanBibber Jr. and Troy Emerson.

Saltillo Independent School District had four places on its board of trustees up this election. Running for the Place 1 seat are Kim Jones Moore, Ron Prather and Yvonna Goldsmith. The Place 1 trustee candidate receiving the most votes will be win the seat. Unchallenged in their bids were Bruce Thompson, Place 3; Randy Johnson, Place 5; and Chad Neal, Place 7 trustee.

In Cumby, voters will cast ballots in the tax rate rollback election. The school is asking the tax rate be increased to $1.26584 per $100 valuation, a $0.13 increase. Voters will check either for or against the proposition.

Como-Pickton is also holding a tax rate rollback election. Voters can check either or against the proposal for a $1.17 per $100 valuation, a $0.13 increase.

Unchallenged on the Nov. 4 general election ballot are Roger "Tex" Maynard, Precinct 1 Constable; Larry Argenbright, Precinct 2 Constable; Debbie Pogue Jenkins, Tax Assessor-Collector; Dusty Hyde Rabe, Hopkins County Attorney; Martin Braddy, 8th Judicial District Attorney; Robert Newsom, 8th Judicial District Judge; and Jack Carter, Place 3 Justice on 6th Court of Appeals District.

Those seeking Court of Criminal Appeals Judge posts are: Republican Cathy Cochran and Libertarian William Bryan Strange III, for Place 9; Republican Paul Womack, Democrat J.R. Molina and Libertarian Dave Howard, Place 4; and Republican Tom Price, Democrat Susan Strawn and Libertarian Matthew E. Eilers, Place 3.

Seeking spots on the Supreme Court are: Republican Phil Johnson, Democrat Linda Rayna Yanez and Libertarian Drew Shirley, Place 8 Justice; Republican Dale Wainwright, Democrat Sam Houston and Liberatarian David G. Smith, Place 7 Justice; and Republican Wallace B. Jefferson, Democrat Jim Jordan and Libertarian Tom Oxford, Chief Justice.

Among the candidates for Railroad Commissioner are Republican Michael L. Williams, Democrat Mark Thompson and Libertarian David Floyd.

Challenging U.S. Senator John Cornyn (Rep.) for his seat are Democrat Richard J. "Rick" Noriega and Libertarian Yvonne Adams Schick.

Of course, the presidential race is also expected to be one of the biggest draws for voters. Choices for president and vice president are Republicans John McCain and Sarah Palin, Democrats Barack Obama and Joe Biden, or Libertarians Bob Barr and Wayne A. Root. Or, voters do have the option of writing someone else if they don't want to cast a ballot for one of those choices.

Devoted party voters also will have the option at the top of their general election ballot-Hopkins County to vote straight party ticket: Republican Party, Democratic Party or Libertarian Party.

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