Tim Leeds Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
With the official recount of votes in five counties in with no change from the original count the winner of the election for state representative in House District 32 is in. Tony Belcourt of Box Elder won the election for the district by one vote, with 491 votes to the 490 cast for Adrian “A.D.” Main of Harlem, Lisa Kimmett, deputy of elections and government security division of the Montana Secretary of State’s office said Monday. Main requested the recount in the election, said Janice Doggett, legal counsel for the Montana Secretary of State’s office. Belcourt and Main could not be reached for comment by deadline this morning. With no Republican candidate in the race for the House seat, the primary results put Belcourt in the Legislature next year for the district, which stretches from Rocky Boy’s Indian Reservation in Hill and Chouteau counties across southern Blaine and Phillips counties to the western corner of Valley County. A third candidate, Jonathan Walker of Harlem, received 290 total votes in the primary. The three campaigned for the seat being left by Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy, D-Rocky Boy, who ran for Senate District 16, which includes all of House District 32 and House District 31, which includes southern Valley and Roosevelt counties. Windy Boy defeated incumbent Sen. Frank Smith of Poplar in the primary, and is unopposed in the general election. Doggett said the results of the recount for House District 32 show the accuracy of the state’s election system. “There was actually no change between the machine count and the hand count,” Doggett said. “I think it goes to show the efficiency and The effectiveness of the use of the machines.” The votes tended to follow the residency of the candidates. In Chouteau County, Belcourt received 25 votes to Main’s 16 and in Hill County Belcourt received 199 to Main’s 122. In Blaine County, Belcourt received 164 votes to Main’s 312. Farther east, Belcourt carried the district, with 67 votes to Main’s 30 in Phillips County and 36 to Main’s 10 votes in Valley County. Walker took the election in Valley County with 37 votes. He received 27 votes in Phillips County, 157 in Blaine County, 68 in Hill County and one vote in Chouteau County. In another closely contested pr imary in nor th-cent ral Montana, incumbent Rep. Edwa r d “Ed ” Bu t c h e r, R-Winifred, won by 20 votes in House District 29, which includes eastern Chouteau County, western Fergus County and Judith Basin County. Butcher, also a former state senator, defeated his opponent in the primary, Scott Seilstad of Denton, 831 to 811, Kimmett said. He will face Dan Simpson of Lewistown, the winner of the Democratic primary in the district, in the Nov. 4 general election.