The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

November 7, 2012

Wyoming officials surprised at high voter turnout

PINEVILLE — With only one contested race on the Wyoming County ballot, there were no surprises in the general election results Tuesday. However, officials were surprised at the high number of voters.

More than 40 percent of registered voters turned out for this election, according to Mike Goode, Wyoming County clerk and the chief election officer.

The average is 12 percent, he noted.

“Some of the candidates historically run better here, in Wyoming County, than they have in this election,” Goode said. “I think that is tied to the president.”

Incumbent magistrates J.R. Boles, Craig Cook, and Kim Farmer, all Democrats, took the three available seats over the lone Republican challenger, Gerald Jackson.

However, Jackson had a respectable showing and trailed closely throughout the evening.

With 36 of 36 precincts reporting, Boles had 3,396 votes, or 23 percent; Cook had 4,116, or 27 percent of the votes; Farmer had 4,420, or 29 percent; and Jackson took 3,149 votes, or 21 percent.

Farmer began serving her first term as magistrate in 2009; prior to that she was a deputy magistrate clerk for nearly 29 years.

Cook was appointed to an unexpired magistrate term in 2008, then elected to the seat in the election later that year.

Boles has more than 20 years experience as a magistrate. He has also been a military policeman, a West Virginia State Trooper, and Oceana Police chief.

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Incumbent Commissioner Silas W. Mullins Jr. was unopposed, as were Sheriff Randall Aliff, Prosecuting Attorney W. Richard “Rick” Staton and Assessor Michael “Mike” E. Cook. They are all Democrats.

Mullins had 5,898 votes; Aliff, 5,778; Staton, 5,522; and Cook, 5,949.

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Sefton Ray Stewart conducted a write-in campaign for county surveyor. He had 199 votes.

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