Early voting in next week’s party primary runoff elections began today at the Anderson County Courthouse Annex and continues through Friday.

After receiving a petition for extended hours last week, Anderson County Tax Assessor/Collector Teri Garvey said early voting will be held from 7 a.m.-to-6 p.m. each day through Friday at the annex.

Runoff election day is Tuesday, April 11.

The Democratic Party runoff ballot in Anderson County features a countywide race; a precinct commissioners’ race; and two statewide races, while local Republicans only have a single statewide race to decide.

Persons who voted in last month’s party primary elections can only vote in that party’s primary runoff election under state law. Registered voters who did not vote in last month’s elections are eligible to vote in either party’s runoff election.

On the Democratic side, two-term incumbent Anderson County Judge Carey G. McKinney and long-time Anderson County Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Linda Bostick Ray are squaring off for the right to advance to the fall general election.

In last month’s Democratic Primary, McKinney had 1,287 votes (42.7 percent) to Ray’s 1,213 votes (40.2 percent), while Ava Harmon, former local tourism director, ran third with 516 votes (17.1 percent).

The McKinney-Ray winner will face unopposed Republican Susan Perryman Evans, a retired Texas Department of Criminal Justice senior warden, in the Nov. 7 general election.

Also on the Democratic ballot is the precinct 2 commissioners’ runoff pitting political newcomer Rashad Q. Mims I against former two-term Precinct 2 Commissioner Rodney A. Howard Sr.

In a tight three-way race last month, Mims had 304 votes (39.4 percent) to Howard’s 291 votes (37.7 percent). L.W. Terry, a precinct 2 employee, ran a competitive third with 176 votes (22.9 percent).

Local Democrats will also be voting in a pair of statewide runoffs — one for the party’s U.S. Senate nominee (Barbara Ann Radnofsky and Gene Kelly) and the other for the party’s lieutenant gubernatorial pick (Maria Luisa Alvarado and Benjamin Z. Grant).

The local Republican ballot includes a single race — a runoff to determine the party’s nominee for Place 8 on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

That race pits incumbent jurist Charles Holcomb against five-term state representative Terry Keel of Austin.

Holcomb, who now resides in Wimberley, is a former East Texan who served as district attorney in Cherokee County during the early 1990s.

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Paul Stone may be contacted via e-mail at pstone@palestineherald.com



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