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Senate race too close to call
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On one side of the aisle it was a blowout as Janice Bowling bowled over her opposition Thursday night, easily claiming the Republican nomination for the 16th District State Senate seat.
Meanwhile, on the other side, it was too close to call at midnight with three candidates all within a handful of votes of one another for the Democratic nomination and the right to face Bowling in November.
At press time, Jim Lewis of Kimball was leading McMinnville resident Steve Roller by 34 votes by a count 2,935 to 2,901. Meanwhile Spencer resident Justin Walling was not to be forgotten as he had 2,877 votes. Local candidates Kevin Lawrence with 1,236 votes and Jeff Bottoms with 670 votes were back in the pack.
While slightly behind in the district, Roller won big in Warren County getting 1,606 votes to his next closest competitor, Lawrence, who amassed more than half his district-wide total of 848 votes in Warren County. Justin Walling had 620 votes in Warren County and Jeff Bottoms had 194. The leader district-wide at press time, Lewis, was last in Warren County with 64 votes.
Roller is a former state senator, appointed to the role by the Warren County Commission upon the retirement of former state Sen. Jerry Cooper. Roller was defeated in a close election by current state Sen. Eric Stewart, who is seeking election to Congress. He will face Dr. Scott DesJarlais in November as DesJarlais crushed his opposition Thursday night to get the nomination.
The Republican side of the state Senate race has been decided. At press time, Bowling had 8,159 votes district-wide, 1,261 of which came from Warren County. Ron Stoltzfus and Eric Chance were one vote apart in the district with 2,278 and 2,277, respectively. Local resident Rod McClellan was last with 866.
In Warren County, McClellan took second far behind Bowling with 280 votes, putting him 23 votes ahead of Stoltzfus. Eric Chance was last in Warren County with 216 votes.