By Jared Ritz
The primary election results are in, and the eight tribal council candidates who will be on the ballot in November have been decided.
Bruce Sunchild Sr., Jonathan Windy Boy, Brian Eagleman, John Chance Houle, Russell Standing Rock, Lois J. Gopher, Russell T. Gopher and Larry Morsette Jr. were the top vote-getters from a list of 37 candidates. They will square off for the four open council seats in the general election on Nov. 5.
A total of 1,097 votes were cast in Tuesday's primary, about average for recent years, according to Mary Ruth St. Pierre, the election board chairwoman.
"In the last three elections, voter turnout has been extremely high," she said.
Three of the four incumbent candidates had a strong showing in the election, capturing the first, second, and third spots. Duncan Standing Rock Sr. , a one-term council member, is the only incumbent who will not advance to the general election.
Sunchild, an eight-year council veteran, received the most votes Tuesday, gathering 381. Windy Boy came in second with 291, and Eagleman took third with 249.
Eagleman believes support for the incumbents has a lot to do with how the government is being run. "We must be doing OK since the people are still supporting us," he said.
The tribal council is the governing body for Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation. It has nine members, with half of the spots up for grabs every two years.
The election results, in alphabetical order, are: Earl Charles Arkinson, 71 votes; Jason Belcourt, 69 votes; Joe Big Knife, 90 votes; Melvin Billy, 48 votes; Bert Corcoran, 107 votes; James R. DuBois, 50 votes; Brian "Kelly" Eagleman, 249 votes; Jay Eagleman, 117 votes.
Harvey Friede Sr. , 147 votes; Arnold Four Souls, 93 votes; Lois J. Gopher, 176 votes; Russell T. Gopher, 162 votes; Virgil Lee Henderson, 68 votes; John Chance Houle, 233 votes; Russell Houle Sr., 46; Enos R. Johnson Sr. , 85.
Joseph J. LaFromBoise Jr., 104; Larry Morsette Jr., 152; Luke Parisian, 119; Mario Patacsil Sr., 53; Duane Raining Bird, 16; Gibby Russette, 93; Tim W. Rosette Sr., 79.
Sybil Sangrey, 138; Duncan Standing Rock Sr., 104; Russell Standing Rock, 200; Debbie St. Pierre, 144; Roger St. Pierre, 74; Clinton "Chewees" Small, 82; Bruce Sunchild Sr., 381; Marva Stump Sunchild, 54.
Leon Blackie Sutherland, 89; Gaile Rock Torres, 59; Lana M. Turner, 39; Arthur "Ozzie" Windy Boy, 67; Jonathan Windy Boy, 291; and Kenneth C. Writing Bird, 94.