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Republicans take Jennings County Commissioners

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VERNON, Ind. — Republicans will dominate the Jennings County Commissioners for the next four years.

In the District 1 County Commissioner race, GOP candidate Bob Willhite defeated incumbent Democrat Jeff Barger by a 59 percent to 41 percent margin.

Matt Sporleder, the only current GOP commissioner, said Willhite’s election likely will assure a reversal of the Sept. 24 decision to replace the seven-member Animal Control Board next year with a three-member elected panel.


Retiring Democrat Jeff Day’s seat on the county commissioners will be filled in January by Republican David Lane, who won the District 2 seat by garnering 56 percent of the vote, compared to 44 percent for Democrat Jeff Gee.

While Republican candidate for County Treasurer Amy Williams suspended her campaign in late August, she still managed to get 41 percent of the vote Tuesday. However, Democrat Sandy Vance emerged with 59 percent of the vote to defeat Williams.

Ronald Bloemer and Patrick Sullivan were elected to serve four-year terms on the school board for the Jennings County Schools. 

Bloemer won 62 percent of the vote for the District 2 seat, compared to 38 percent for Brad Armand. In the District 3 race, Sullivan earned 57 percent of the vote to defeat Beverly Rascoe.  Glorianna Pieratt Robbins ran unopposed in District 1.

The winners of the three Jennings County Council at-large seats are all Republicans. Howard Malcomb won 21 percent of the vote, followed by Paul Belding with 18 percent and David Woodall with 17 percent.

Among Democrats who were defeated, Craig Kipper earned 16 percent, followed by Ray Hughes with 15 percent and Warren Lucas with 13 percent.

Incumbent Jennings County Coroner Brian Sawyer was defeated in his bid for re-election. North Vernon funeral home owner Eugene Rudicel won 60 percent of the vote, compared with 40 percent for Sawyer.

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