Walker wins circuit clerk race

Published 7:42 pm Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ben Hillyer | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT Eddie Walker shakes hands of congratulations Tuesday evening as his wife Cathy shows her elation and relief after it was announced that Walker would win re-election.

NATCHEZ — Incumbent Circuit Clerk Eddie Walker can rest easy in his office for another four years after defeating challenger Jennifer “Lady J” Minor in Tuesday’s Democratic primary runoff.

“Let me tell you, what a relief,” Walker said of his win.

BEN HILLYER | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — After hours of sweating and walking in campaign T-shirts, the Walkers promised they would celebrate a win by burning one of the shirts, which they did on Union Street Tuesday night.

Walker ended the night with 3,547 votes or 54.81 percent, and Minor had 2,924 votes or 45.18 percent.

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Walker said a lot of people have been helping him campaign during the recent three-week push to the polls following the first primary on Aug 2.

“It has been a grueling three weeks to say the least,” Walker said.

Walker celebrated the win Tuesday night with friends, family and colleagues at 110 N. Union St.

Voter turnout was 34 percent, according to unofficial results from the Adams County Election Commission.

Election Commissioner Larry Gardner said he expected less voter turnout at Tuesday’s runoff election than at the Aug. 2 primary, which had a turnout of just below 50 percent.

“There’s fewer candidates (in Tuesday’s races),” Gardner said Tuesday, “And (there’s) a lower interest level because some (voters) were only interested in particular candidates who either won or lost (in the first primary).”

Ben Hillyer | The Natchez Democrat — Norma Walker, left, was all smiles Tuesday night as she got a hug from her son Eddie Walker during his celebration party on Union Street.

Tuesday’s voter turnout ended up being higher than Gardner actually expected, he said after the polls closed.

Walker said he thought the race would have been closer had fewer residents made it out to the polls.

“I was worried about voter turnout,” Walker said.

Walker thanked his voters for believing in him and his staff to elect him to another term.

He said he was also grateful to be able to get off the campaign trail and back to his office.

“I’m very glad to get back to normal,” he said.

Deputy clerks on Walkers’ staff who waited for election results at the courthouse where they were on duty were especially interested in last night’s results.

“I’m happy, happy happy,” Deputy Clerk Evelyn Stone said.

“Good things happen to good people.”

Charlene Gibbs, another deputy clerk on Walker’s staff seconded Stone’s emotion.

“You can’t keep a good man down,” Gibbs said.

Tuesday’s results did not include approximately 540 uncounted absentee ballots and less than 100 affidavit ballots.

Gardner said the absentee and affidavit votes should not affect the outcome of Tuesday night’s race for circuit clerk.

A call to Minor was unreturned.

Click here for a pdf of precinct-by-precinct results from Adams County.