Lazarus, Watts win

Published 9:09 pm Tuesday, November 6, 2007

NATCHEZ — Voters re-elected one incumbent and ousted another during the general election Tuesday.

Over barbeque, Mike Lazarus shared hugs and handshakes with friends and family Tuesday night after defeating longtime incumbent Sammy Cauthen.

“It has been a hard road here,” Lazarus said at his campaign party on Tuesday night.

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Lazarus won by 459 votes. He recieved 1,253 votes to Cauthen’s 794 votes.

Lazarus said that his victory over Cauthen, the 28-year incumbent, is proof that the people of Adams County are ready for change.

“I think voters showed us they are ready for fresh new ideas,” he said.

Lazarus said he has spent countless hours speaking with the people of Adams County to find out exactly what they want in a supervisor.

And meeting with other board members and community business leaders, Lazarus said, he gained an understanding of what Adams County needs.

“We (board members) really need to start planning for the future,” he said. “We need a plan for five to 10 years in the future, we don’t have that now.”

Once his term begins, Lazarus said he wants to focus on bringing new recreation to the county without raising taxes.

“We have new money coming into the county now, new business are coming here,” he said.

Though Lazarus won’t be able to take action on his new plans until he takes office on Jan. 1, he will likely need that time to rest.

“We have been campaigning for the last 11 month,” he said.

Lazarus’ wife Kim Lazarus was elated for her husband.

“He has spent so much time finding out what the people want,” she said. “He is going to do a great job.”

In District 2, voters re-elected incumbent Henry Watts by more than 200 votes in Tuesday’s general election.

Watts won 1,060 votes, or 55.41 percent of the votes. Joe Eidt won 853 votes, or 44.59 percent.

Watts, celebrating at home with family and close friends, said he was confident he would win but he knew it would be close.

“I appreciate how good a race Joe Joe ran,” Watts said. “It was a good, hard race.”

Watts said he was grateful for the support of his family and friends.

“Who I’m extremely grateful toward is the residents of Adams County,” Watts said. “They feel I’ve done a good job and want me to continue doing a good job. I’m going to continue representing the taxpayers and voters every day I’m in that job.”

Watts said he couldn’t say what he would do over the next four years. That would largely depend on the board’s new make-up, he said.

“We’ve got to work as a group,” he said. “I think we are going to work well as a group. At that point, I think we can figure out what to do for the next four years.”

Eidt, who joined supporters at The Marketplace Café, said he knew the race would be tough.

“We gave it the best effort we could,” Eidt said. “The people have spoken. And I hope Mr. Watts will keep his word and do what he said to keep the county moving forward.”

Eidt said he was glad to have had the chance to campaign and get out to meet people.

“I think I had a great showing,” he said. “But I didn’t get in it to show. I got in it to win.”

As for the next county elections, Eidt said he wouldn’t rule out running again.

“I never say no,” he said. “I learned that a long time ago. If I do get in it again, I want the same team behind me.”

Eidt visited Watt’s house to congratulate him Tuesday night.