VOL. 124 | NO. 223 | Thursday, November 12, 2009
Early Voting Starts For Local Elections
By Bill Dries
Early voting in the last two local elections of 2009 begins today for voters in East Memphis and East Shelby County.
On the ballot is the general election contest between Democrat Adrienne Pakis-Gillon and Republican Brian Kelsey for state Senate District 31. The district covers Germantown and parts of Cordova.
Germantown Republican Paul Stanley gave up the seat in August in the wake of an affair with a legislative intern. Gillon and Kelsey ran unopposed in their respective Oct. 15 primaries.
Kelsey got more votes in the predominantly Republican district, but Gillon wasn’t far behind with 5,792 votes compared to 6,646 in Kelsey’s GOP primary column.
The other election on the ballot starting today is for state House District 83 – the seat Kelsey gave up to run for state Senate.
Memphis attorney Guthrie Castle is running unopposed in the Democratic primary. He automatically advances to the Jan. 12 special general election.
The GOP primary is a three-candidate contest among:
- Mark White, the Republican nominee for the 9th U.S. Congressional district race of 2006.
- John Pellicciotti, who has run twice as the GOP nominee in state House District 93.
- And Michael Porter, who, like White and Pellicciotti, is from Germantown.
Election Day is Dec. 1. During early voting, citizens in the 60 Election Day precincts involved can vote at any of the six early voting sites. But on Election Day, voters must vote at the precinct they are assigned based on their home addresses.
The set of three races, one of them a one-candidate affair, ends a busy election year that began with elections in Arlington and Lakeland as the only regularly scheduled political contests for voters to decide.
Since then, the 18-year run of former Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton came to an end in July with his resignation. A special election followed in October that included the primary contests for Stanley’s State Senate seat.