WCTV - Elections - Headlines

Dean Burke New District 11 Georgia Senator

By: Kara Duffy Email
By: Kara Duffy Email

Associated Press Release

ATLANTA (AP) -- Republicans were victorious in all three special elections for seats in the state House and Senate.

In the 11th state Senate district -- spanning areas of southwest Georgia -- Republican Dean Burke won 58 percent of votes over Republican Mike Keown's 41.

In the 21st state House of Representatives district -- which spans part of Cherokee County in north Georgia -- Republican Scot Turner won 61 percent of votes over Republican Brian Laurens who won 38 percent.

The six-way race for the 71st state House of Representatives district -- in Coweta County-- featured five Republicans and a Democrat. Republican David Stover won 42 percent of votes and Republican Thomas Crymes placed a distant second with just under 20 percent of the votes.

Tuesday night's unofficial results don't include provisional ballots.


By: Kara Duffy
February 5, 2013, 6:13pm

Voters still have a little under an hour left to cast their ballot for Georgia's District 11 Senate Seat.

It's down to Republican Mike Keown from Coolidge and Republican Dean Burke from Bainbridge.

WCTV was at Thomas County Board of Education to see just how many folks made it out to vote today.

Thomas County Board of Education is just one of the sixteen polling places where voters have been casting their ballots throughout the day, and election officials say, it's been quiet most of the day.

In Thomas County, however, it has been reported that around lunch time there was a rush of voters and at one point there was even a line.

Election officials say with it being a smaller specials election, the low voter turnout was expected.

They say there was an increase in the number of people who casted their votes early this time around compared to last month's election.

Phillip Henry, Thomas County Elections Supervisor, stated, "we had a very good week of early voting. We voted 969 votes, so we had an excellent turnout, especially considering Thomas County is a split county."

Election officials say the rainy weather this morning could have played a role in the low number of people heading out to vote.


By: Kara Duffy

A new District 11 Georgia Senator will soon take office.

Voters will decide tomorrow who will fill the seat during the special election runoff race.

The candidates are Republican Mike Keown from Thomas County and Republican Dean Burke from Decatur County.

Whoever is elected will begin their term, immediately.

We want to clarify that earlier we misidentified candidate Dean Burke as a Democrat on our news show.

Dean Burke is a Republican candidate.


By: Kara Duffy

Cairo, GA- Republican Mike Keown from Thomas County and Republican Dean Burke from Decatur County went head to head in a debate Monday for the District 11 Senate Seat.

First matter of business was education.

"I believe the best education decisions are made for Grady County, in Grady County, not even in Atlanta, but in Grady County; same thing in Thomas County," said Keown.

"We need to push back against the federal government, try to come up with some common sense approaches, listen to educators in the communities; let them tell you what needs to be taught, then go to work," added Burke.

Another hot topic was public safety and gun control. Both candidates voiced their support for the Second Amendment and agreed that protecting Georgians is a top priority.

"Now we have to worry about fortifying our schools," said Keown. "Now we have to worry about who's going to walk in our schools and harm somebody."

"I've been a hunter and fisherman my whole life," said Burke. "I'm not interested in any gun grabbers from Washington coming down and changing our culture in Southwest Georgia."

Whoever is elected will replace longtime Senator John Bulloch who resigned back in December.

Voters will decide on Feb. 5.

By: Kara Duffy

Early voting kicks off today in the run-off race to fill the District 11 Seat in the Georgia Senate.

After a special election back on Janurary 8th, six candidates were narrowed down to just two: Republican Mike Keown from Coolidge and Republican Dean Burke from Bainbridge, to replace state senator John Bulloch.

Election officials say hectic holiday schedules, short campaign periods, and the fact that voters were just coming off of a general election could have contributed to the low voter turnout the first time.

Voters in eight southwest Georgia counties will have until February first to cast their ballots early.


By: Kara Duffy

Thomasville, GA- Early voting kicks off Monday, Jan. 28 for the runoff race to fill the District 11 Georgia Senate Seat.

After a special election back on Jan. 8, six candidates were narrowed down to just two: Republican Mike Keown from Coolidge and Republican Dean Burke from Bainbridge.

Election officials say hectic holiday schedules, short campaign periods, and the fact that voters were just coming off of a general election could have contributed to the low voter turnout.

They hope the runoff election and early voting period will give people more time to get familiar with the candidates and vote.

The last day for early voting will be Feb. 1 and the special election runoff is set for Tuesday, Feb. 5.

Burke and Keown will face off in a debate at the Roddenbery Memorial Library in Grady County Monday, Jan. 28 at 12:00 p.m.

Thomasville, GA- Voters in eight counties have spoken and the race for the District 11 Senate Seat is now down to two; Republican Mike Keown from Coolidge and Republican Dean Burke from Bainbridge.

Both candidates have strong ties to their communities. Keown served in the Georgia House of Representatives and as Mayor of Coolidge. Burke, on the other hand, has spent nearly 30 years as a physician in Bainbridge and has served on the city council and local boards.

"I have the knowledge that is necessary to be an effective leader; that includes the knowledge of health care, which is so important right now with all the things coming from the Federal Government about health care issues and Medicaid," said Burke.

Keown added, "I have a real track record of caring about people, of helping people, of going to the legislature in Atlanta as a state representative and standing up for Southwest Georgia and being a real advocate for our Southwest Georgia values."

Whoever is elected will replace former Senator John Bulloch who resigned in December.

"Nobody is going to really fill John's shoes, but I think I can do a real good job representing agriculture and everyone else in Southwest Georgia," said Keown.

"I've got a great agriculture background and a lot of the agricultural community has coalesced behind me because they think I can take up where he left off."

Voters will decide on February 5th.
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Thomasville, GA - Dean Burke received a little more than 42 percent of the vote. He will have a run-off with Mike Keown who received a little more than 37 percent of votes. The run-off is scheduled for February 5th.

Results for other candidates:
-Brad Hughes (R) :7.81 percent
-Jeffrey Bivins (L) :6.47 percent
-Eugene McNease (R) :4.69 percent
-Marshall Berman (R) :1.06 percent


Thomasville, GA- Voters are making their way back to the polls. This time, it's to decide who will replace John Bulloch as the District 11 State Senator. Bulloch resigned last month.

"It's important to put someone in there, so they can hit the ground running and try to stand up for rural Georgia, for Southwest Georgia," said Probate Judge and Colquitt County Election Supervisor Wes Lewis.

Candidates vying for the seat include, five Republicans: Brad Hughes, Dean Burke, Eugene McNease, Marshall Berman, Mike Keown, and one libertarian, Jeffrey Bivins.

Lewis says in Colquitt County, they're only expecting 5 to 10% of voters to come out.

"They ought to be out here voting," said 87-year-old Colquitt County voter, Walter Franklin Farmer. "It's a pretty day and nothing to keep them from it; they just need to make up their mind to come."

Margaret McDaniel, another Colquitt County voter added, "There's plenty of people that died for us to be able to vote; people could not vote. We have a right to vote and we should respect that right and cast our ballot."

In Thomas County, poll workers say voter turnout has also been low, but as expected.

One of the candidates would have to win more than half of the votes tonight to be elected and if that doesn't happen, then the top two will face off in a runoff election which is scheduled for February 5th.

Whoever is elected then, will serve a two year term.


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