Runoff races decided

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Steven Curtis will be the newest district judge in Pike County after defeating opposing candidate January “Jana” Blair Ellis in the Republican runoff for the seat Tuesday.

With all but one precinct reporting, reserved for the provisional ballots that will be counted next Tuesday to certify the election, Curtis leads the vote 2,111 (58.2 percent) to 1,517 (41.8 percent).

“It feels good,” Curtis said following the victory. “It’s a relief that it’s over. I’m proud to know that I have the support of the people of Pike County to continue the excellent job that Judge (Bill) Hightower is doing. I thank my family, friends and supporters for helping me get here.”

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Hightower is stepping down from the position after 42 years in the district judge seat and both candidates have praised his efforts in running an excellent district court system.

Ellis congratulated Curtis on the victory and said she looks forward to working with him in the court.

“I know, like me, he is glad to see today finally get here,” Ellis said. “I know we fell a bit short in the polls, but I am pleased with our campaign’s efforts. I want to thank my family and friends for their overwhelming support. I look forward to working with Steven to continue the excellent reputation that the district court holds.”

Curtis also thanked Ellis for running a good campaign.

“Jana and I have been friends for a long time,” Curtis said. “I respect the race she ran and look forward to practicing with her in the district court.”

Jamie Scarbrough, circuit clerk, said voter turnout for the runoff was low.

“Some of that could be attributed to lack of Democratic ballot, and there were probably some people tired of the ads,” Scarbrough said. “I wish more voters would come out and be part of the election process though.”

Several other runoff races were also decided during the election.

Incumbent Martha Roby soundly defeated former Montgomery mayor and one-time Democrat Bobby Bright in the race to be named the Republican nominee  for Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Roby received 68 percent of the district-wide vote, while Bright received 32 percent of votes. Roby also carried Pike County by nearly 68 percent of the vote.

Troy King edged out Steve Marshall in Pike County for the Republican nomination to the attorney general’s seat, but it was Marshall that came out on top statewide with 62 percent of the vote.

Will Ainsworth defeated Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh for the lieutenant governor seat, gaining just 52 percent of the statewide vote, although Cavanaugh carried Pike County.

Rick pate defeated Gerald Dial 57 percent to 43 percent in the race for commissioner of agriculture.