In an upset victory, Pittsburg Republican candidate Jacob LaTurner soundly defeated incumbent Bob Marshall, of Fort Scott, in Tuesday’s Republican primary election by 3,790 votes to 2,835, a difference of 955 votes.
In an upset victory, Pittsburg Republican candidate Jacob LaTurner soundly defeated incumbent Bob Marshall, of Fort Scott, in Tuesday’s Republican primary election by 3,790 votes to 2,835, a difference of 955 votes. Votes were still unofficial as of press time — absentee ballots must still be counted — and Marshall carried only his native Bourbon County.
Marshall and LaTurner are no strangers to running against each other, as Marshall defeated LaTurner for the Senate seat in 2008.
“I called him and congratulated him on the win and wished him good luck in the senate race,” Marshall said, adding that LaTurner can’t rest until after the November general election against Democratic opponent Gene Garman. “I want to thank the citizens of District 13 and I was proud to serve them. I wish only the best for them.”
Marshall, who has solid Republican credentials, said he thinks his status as a moderate Republican may have worked against him. He didn’t want to comment on the effects of campaign contributions from Political Action Committees, but said they could have played a role in LaTurner’s election.
“I think conservatives wanted to get control of the Senate, but I’m not using that as an excuse,” Marshall said. “That’s how politics works. The Republican Party of District 13 have spoken and they have a new Republican candidate.”
Marshall said he was unsure whether he would run against LaTurner in the 2016 election.
“I’ll have to talk it over with my wife and my family, consider the alternatives and go from there,” Marshall said.
LaTurner said he was thrilled with the results.
“We have the most dedicated volunteers working for us,” LaTurner said. “They believed in us and worked so hard. This is a great night.
“Bob and I certainly had some disagreements on the issues, but my opponent is an honorable man with a distinguished record,” LaTurner continued. “We had some policy issues, but he called me and congratulated me and was very gracious, and I appreciated that. It’s time for Republican voters to come together as one party now.”
LaTurner said he would begin to plot his campaign against Gene Garman after celebrating Tuesday night’s victory.
“I’m not thinking about that right now,” LaTurner said. “I’m going to enjoy this for about 24 hours, then we’re going to get to work on the general election.”
Crawford County Commission 2nd District seat
In the race for the Crawford County Commission 2nd District seat, former commissioner Tom Moody, of Frontenac, defeated fellow Frontenac resident and incumbent Linda Grilz by 550 votes to 421. Another challenger, Tim Gintner, finished with 374 votes. Results were still unofficial as of press time, and absentee ballots must still be counted.
Page 2 of 2 - Since all three candidates for the position are Democrats, the winner of the primary automatically becomes the next commissioner.
“I’m excited and very pleased,” Moody said. “We worked hard, and the people voiced their opinion.”
He added that he felt Grilz worked a good campaign.
Grilz, who took office as Crawford County’s first woman commissioner in January 2009, said that she was disappointed at losing re-election.
“I like doing the work, serving the people,” she said. “I have served, I don’t have any regrets about what I’ve done for the citizens of Crawford County. I’ve made my decisions with their best interests at heart. The citizens have spoken, and I wish Tom Moody the best.”
When asked if she would consider running for office again, Grilz said she had no plans to do so at this time.
“It’s too early to tell,” she said.
Tim Gintner made his first run for a commission seat against Pat Barone and Mike Knaup in 1986, was defeated then, and doesn’t think he’ll try it again.
“I should have worked a little bit harder,” he said. “What we need is for people to get out and vote. We had a very, very low voter turn-out. People gripe, but they don’t seem to want to change things.”
Even though he doesn’t intend to run again, Gintner vowed to continue attending commission meetings and expressing his views.