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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

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Primary election results set up Harris vs Lenoir race for County Mayor

State Sen. Lee Harris will face Shelby County Trustee David Lenoir in the race for Shelby County mayor this August, according to Wednesday’s complete but unofficial election results.

Linda Phillips, administrator of elections, said a total of about 75,000 Shelby County residents cast their votes in this year’s primary election. That included 41,533 who came out Tuesday to cast their votes on election day.

Harris garnered a stunning 34,081 votes as opposed to his nearest challenger for the Democratic nomination, Sidney Chism, who received 10,425 votes. There were 262 write in votes for a total of 44,768 votes in the Democratic race.

Lenoir received 18,408 votes beating out his nearest challenger, County Commissioner Terry Roland, who garnered 8,655 votes. Another GOP hopeful was Juvenile Court Clerk Joy Touliatos, who garnered 3,115 votes, and there were 20 write-in votes on the Republican side for a total of 30,198 votes cast.

Harris and Lenoir will square off in August along with candidates in a wide range of county wide races.

Harris thanked the volunteers across Shelby County who helped make Tuesday’s victory possible.

“We worked hard across the entire county and it worked out,” he said. “I want to thank the people all around the county from Collierville to Whitehaven, from Box Town to Germantown. I’m proud and pleased.”

Harris said he was especially happy that so many young people came out to support his campaign.

In a speech Tuesday night, Harris praised Chism for his hard work and long serving dedication to Shelby County.

“He has served this county in one capacity or another for four decades,” Harris said. “He put up an incredible fight during this primary season. If the results were measured by a person’s heart and commitment to community, I think Sidney Chism and I would be neck and neck.

“Thank you to Sidney Chism, former chairman of the county commission, former state senator, and still a close friend of my family.”

Lenoir said his victory as the Republican nominee was won “on the ground.”

“I’m just so proud of the work our team did today,” he said. “I’m grateful to the volunteers, the folks who knocked on doors, put out signs, volunteered at the polls.”

“I’ll be ready for August,” Lenoir said. “I’ll relax a little bit and get back after it.”

In the race for Shelby County Sheriff, Chief Deputy Floyd Bonner won the Democratic nomination with 31,765 votes as compared to his closest rival, Bennie Cobb, who received 10,970 votes. There were 104 write in votes cast in the race for a total of 42,839.

On the Republican side, County Office of Preparedness Director Dale Lane won the GOP nomination with 25,719 votes. He ran unopposed and there were 198 write in votes for a total of 25,917 votes.

Bonner said he also plans to take Wednesday off before plowing ahead with his campaign. He said the campaign has been a humbling experience for him.

“I’m humbled by the amount of support I received across party lines and across racial lines,” he said. “I’m so appreciative and thankful to the citizens of Memphis and Shelby County.”

Bonner, who runs the day-to-day operations of the sheriff’s department, predicted, “we will prevail again in August.”

Memphis City Council  member Janice Fullilove said she “had a feeling” she might win the Democratic nomination for Juvenile Court Clerk and now is looking forward to running in the general election.

“I’m so glad for the people here in Memphis. They know the kind of person I am and I thank them so very much. I am just overwhelmed,” Fullilove said.

Fullilove will reach the end of her term at the end of 2019 unless voters approve a referendum expanding term limits for the city mayor an council.

Fullilove received 25,118 votes. She defeated Harold C. Smith, who received 14,138 votes and Morrie “Jimmy” Noel, who received 4,348 votes. There were 86 write in votes for a total of 43,690 votes.

Bobby Simmons won the Republication nomination for Juvenile Court Clerk with 16,298 votes over Robert Hill, who garnered 9,148 votes. There were 28 write in votes for a total of 25,474 votes.

Simmons could not be reached for comment by The New Tri-State Defender’s deadline for this story.

In the highly contested race for County Commission District 7, Tami Sawyer won the Democratic nomination and will face Samuel D. Goff, who ran opposed in the Republican Primary.

In County Commission District 8, Mickell M. Lowery beat three other challengers for the Democratic Party nomination. No GOP candidate qualified for the race.

Phillips said the results from Tuesday’s election should be certified by May 15.The county general election will be held on Aug. 2.



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