TAHLEQUAH – In the Dist. 5 race for Tribal Council, incumbent E.O. Smith was re-elected by a wide margin, receiving 82.3% of the vote in a field of three candidates.
“It was just awesome,” Smith said. “I can’t believe the overwhelming support I had from the community.”
The results, still unofficial when announced on June 5, gave Smith 545 ballots,
RL Bell 84 and Richard W. Tyler 33.
“We knew we had the vote, but everyone needed to go vote, and they did,” Smith said. “It was unreal. It was raining all week and people still showed up.”
Smith offered thanks to “so many people who helped in so many ways,” and said he noticed good signs of support throughout District 5. He added that he had also received many calls of encouragement from constituents.
“I’m looking forward to going to this next (Tribal Council) meeting,” he said. “We’ve got some good ideas for District 5 – for some projects this year that can create jobs and help our tourism.”
Vote total divided by precinct and absentee ballots were:
Sallisaw Precinct – Smith 61, Tyler 9, Bell 9.
Vian Precinct – Smith 287, Bell 57, Tyler 21.
Gore Precinct – Smith 102, Bell 11, Tyler 1.
Absentee – Smith 95, Bell 7, Tyler 2.
A total of 41 ballots were challenged: 17 at the Gore Precinct site inside the Gore Police and Fire Station, 14 at the Vian Precinct polling place inside B.J. Traw Gym, and 10 at the Sallisaw Precinct site inside the Housing Authority of the Cherokee Nation office.
All results are unofficial until certified by the Election Commission. Challenged ballots are not included in absentee or At-Large election totals.
In all the June 5 races, recount requests must be received by June 9, and any recount must be completed by June 11. The deadline for appeals is June 14. Requests for absentee ballots in runoff races must be received by June 21. Absentee ballots will be mailed June 28-29. Walk-in or early absentee voting will be offered at the EC office on July 17 and July 20-22. Runoff elections are July 24.