|Chuck Vette wins commissioner race; Hospital district dissolved|
|Written by Wauneta Breeze|
|Thursday, 17 May 2012 21:19|
Voter turnout in county reaches 36 percent
By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican
Tuesday’s District 1 commissioner race turned out the voters in the Wauneta precinct with incumbent Chuck Vette winning the race.
Vette bested three other Republican challengers, garnering a total of 147 votes. He was followed by Bill Greeley, with 103 votes; Gary Grimes with 22 votes; and Ted Brewer with 17 votes.
The commissioner’s race was essentially decided Tuesday, since there is no Democratic candidate on the ticket for the General Election in November.
Voters in Chase County resoundingly reversed a May 2010 Primary decision by voting to dissolve the Chase County Hospital District. The vote was 727 for dissolving the district to 175 against.
Board members of the district will still oversee the dissolution process, with two members elected Tuesday.
Incumbent Bill Bauerle and Merrilyn Leibbrandt won seats on the board.
Fischer upsets Bruning
State Senator Deb Fischer of Valentine pulled off one of the biggest upsets in years in Nebraska politics. She defeated Attorney General Jon Bruning for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination Tuesday.
In a race that tightened up down the stretch, Bruning was still the favorite going into Tuesday.
Bruning held a five-point lead with about 30 percent of the eastern precincts in.
However, Fischer started to close the gap and gained momentum as precincts in central and western Nebraska started reporting in. She flipped the deficit into a four-point lead.
She carried about every out-state county with the exception of Keith, Lincoln, Box Butte, Red Willow and Scottsbluff.
Fischer captured 41 percent of the vote while Bruning grabbed 36 percent and Don Stenberg 19 percent.
Democrats nominated former Nebraska governor and U.S. senator Bob Kerrey as their candidate for the Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Ben Nelson, who didn’t run.
The focus of the race will now shift to November’s General Election, which will also be marked by a presidential election.
Republican challenger Mitt Romney, former governor of Massachusetts, will try to unseat standing president, Democrat Barack Obama.
Voter turnout light
Chase County Clerk Debbie Clark said the voter turnout was a little higher than she expected and was helped by the District 1 commissioner race with 43 percent of the Wauneta precinct voting.
Overall, a total of 929 registered voters participated in Tuesday’s primary, representing a turnout of 36.6 percent.