Ouray County Stays Blue, Elects Batchelder, Padgett – and Obama (Just Barely)
by Peter Shelton
Nov 06, 2012 | 1795 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print

OURAY COUNTY – In results released late Tuesday evening, incumbent Democratic candidate Lynn Padgett was re-elected to the District 1 County Commissioner seat, while Republican candidate (and former county commissioner) Don Batchelder was elected to the District 3 seat.

Padgett received 1,655 votes, equaling 52.3 percent of the total votes cast. Republican challenger Jack Flowers received 1,512 votes or 47.7 percent of the vote.

“I’m thrilled. I think it’s a great outcome, and I’m honored to be serving Ouray County for one more term,” Padgett said late Tuesday night.

Asked if she would take a day off to recover, she said: “No day off. We’ve got a BOCC meeting tomorrow morning, with enough on the agenda to take us through at least half the day.”

In the District 3 race, Batchelder received 1,545 votes or 50.9 percent of the vote – a narrow 55-vote margin over Independent candidate Pat Willits, who received 1,490 votes or 49.1 percent.

Reached on Wednesday, Batchelder noted there were 31 provisional votes yet to be counted, but said he was reassured by the clerk’s office that those potential votes were not enough in any case to change the outcome, or to trigger a recount.

“I’m honored to be selected again to represent the citizens of Ouray County,” he said. “I want to thank my supporters, and I want to reiterate my position – and it’s always been my position – that I will represent all the citizens of Ouray County, and not just the people who supported me.”

A total of 3,218 votes were cast out of 4,386 registered voters in Ouray County for a 73.4 percent turnout.

In the presidential race, Ouray County results largely mirrored those of four years ago, with Obama taking 51.5 percent of the vote compared to 46.2 percent for Mitt Romney. With that, Ouray may have reinforced its new reputation as a bellweather county.  

In state races, Republican incumbent Congressman Scott Tipton held his seat with county support, garnering 49 percent to challenger Sal Pace’s 45.9 percent.

In the District 59 State House race, Democrat Mike McLachlan took 52.6 percent of the votes in Ouray County, versus 47.4 percent for incumbent Republican J. Paul Brown.

Asked if he would take any time to celebrate Wednesday, Batchelder, who has served two previous terms as a county commissioner and earns his living as a mason, said, “Maybe I’ll lift a few fewer rocks today.”



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