Incumbent, Neil Harris, Keeps Chancery Court Judge Seat

The race for Chancery Court Judge came down to just a handful of votes, the remainder of which were counted Thursday morning. After irregularities involving voter IDs and affidavit ballots were cleared up, it was determined that incumbent, Neil Harris, will keep his seat, but this election may not be over yet.

The race for the Jackson County Chancery Court Judge seat came down to the last few votes Thursday, and for Paula Yancey, it was disappointing news. Amy St. Pe, Yancey’s campaign chairman, says, "It was exciting. We certainly hoped for a different result, but we have no regrets."

The dramatic conclusion began when over a dozen citizens in Jackson County voted without identification. They were given five days to verify their ID with the election committee, but only one of these votes counted. There were nearly 100 ballots rejected due to various irregularities. St. Pe also says, "If they voted in the wrong precinct or if they failed to sign their affidavit ballot, those would be two of the main reasons."

Harris was in court all day Thursday and was unavailable for comment. Harris beat Yancey by only about 20 votes, and with so many irregularities, Yancey’s campaign has 12 days to ask for a review and three days to inform Harris if they plan to do so. Danny Glascox, Chairman of Jackson County Election Committee, says, “We require both sides to be here before we open any bags because we are transparent and we have to be fair to both sides."

The results are in and this election is certified. This election had some incredibly close races, proving that every vote truly does count. While the voting machines are now dormant, they are being tested and prepared for the upcoming Jackson County Sheriff’s runoff. Joe Martin, Jackson County Circuit Clerk, says, "The Sheriff is an important position in Jackson County. We have two qualified candidates running and they are well known through this county, so get out and vote."

The runoff between Mike Ezell and Scott McIlrath is November 25th, leaving little time for the election committee to prepare the many absentee ballots they are anticipating.

Martin closes, "It’s a Thanksgiving holiday that week. A lot of people are out of town, but they care enough to vote. So we got to get those absentees ready for them."

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