Utah Legislature primary results: Longtime Sen. Gene Davis appears headed for defeat

Utah Legislature primary results: Longtime Sen. Gene Davis appears headed for defeat

Longtime Sen. Gene Davis’s career on Capitol Hill appears to be coming to a close as first-time candidate Nate Blouin surged in the race for Senate District 3.

And in Utah’s most liberal senate district, only 114 votes separated incumbent Sen. Derek Kitchen from Dr. Jennifer Plumb in a rematch of the 2018 Democratic primary.

In the Republican primary in House District 11, incumbent Rep. Kelly Miles trailed Katy Hall in results on Tuesday night. And Willie Billings and Joseph Elison were essentially tied as of Tuesday night in the GOP primary for House District 72.

[Mike Lee wins every county | Moore, Stewart, Curtis and Owens fend off challengers | Vote counts | Election night updates]

Senate District 5, Republican primary: Ogden, Hill Air Force Base and Mountain Green

Incumbent Majority Whip Sen. Ann Millner narrowly led challenger Doug Durbano, a Layton attorney, in unofficial early returns, capturing 59% of the vote as of Tuesday night.

Millner, a former president of Weber State University, has served in the Legislature since January 2015, when she was elected to represent Senate District 18.

Due to last year’s redistricting, she is running for Senate District 5.

Senate District 6, Republican primary: Layton

Incumbent Sen. Jerry Stevenson was ahead of his GOP primary opponent, Betty Young, in the primary for Senate District 6, winning 62% of the vote as of Tuesday night, according to unofficial early results.

Stevenson, who served as Layton’s mayor for over a decade before being elected to the Senate, has served in Senate District 21 since 2010. The area he served is now Senate District 6 following last year’s redistricting. Stevenson currently serves as the Senate’s Executive Appropriations Committee chair.

The district includes northern and western areas of Davis County, including parts of Clearfield, Syracuse and Layton.

Senate District 9, Democratic primary: Portions of Salt Lake City

Incumbent Sen. Derek Kitchen narrowly led challenger Jennifer Plumb in the Democratic primary in Utah’s most progressive senate district.

Kitchen, seeking a second term, leads Plumb by only 100 votes as of 10 p.m.

The incumbent senator said earlier Tuesday he was feeling good about the early results but noted there are still many ballots to count.

He said his campaign has spent a lot of time engaging voters over the past few months, including knocking on 17,000 doors and sending 50,000 text messages.

“We’re going to keep working,” he said.

Tuesday’s contest is a rematch of the 2018 Democratic primary for what was then Senate District 2, a race Plumb lost by 550 votes.

Kitchen, a small-business owner, has argued he provides better representation on Capitol Hill as the only millennial in the Senate and only openly queer member of the Legislature.

Plumb, a pediatric emergency department doctor, has said her experience building relationships and shaping legislation on the hill will make her a more effective lawmaker. She could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.

The winner will face write-in candidate Vance Hansen in November.

Senate District 13, Democratic primary: South Salt Lake and Murray

First-time candidate Nate Blouin surged to a huge lead in his bid for a seat held by longtime Sen. Gene Davis, capturing 73% of the vote, according to early returns.

“We are feeling confident that we are going to win this thing,” Blouin said Tuesday.

Davis, who has served in the Senate since 1999, has said his knowledge of rules in the Legislature has helped him to be effective for his constituents. If reelected, he wants to focus on boosting wages and improving low-income housing options.

He acknowledged the grim picture the early results showed but said he was not ready to concede.

“It looks like the die has been cast,” he said, “and people make choices.”

Blouin says he has the vision to help Utah tackle pressing problems like poor air quality and affordable housing.

The winner of Tuesday’s contest will face Republican Roger L. Stout in November.

Senate District 14, Democratic primary: Millcreek, Holladay and Murray

Current House District 40 Rep. Stephanie Pitcher had a big early lead against Deondra Brown for the Democratic nomination for Senate District 14, according to unofficial early results.

As of Tuesday night, Pitcher had 79% of the vote, compared to Brown’s 21%.

Pitcher, who has been a member of the Utah House since 2019, is a prosecutor in Davis County who has pushed for cash bail reform in Utah, among other pieces of legislation. Brown is a musician and Julliard School graduate who has testified in favor of expanding consent education.

The winner will be on the ballot this fall against Dan Sorensen, the Republican nominee.

Senate District 23, Republican primary: Pleasant Grove, Orem and Vineyard

Incumbent Sen. Keith Grover had a wide lead over challenger Brandon Beckham in his bid to clinch the Republican nomination in the Senate District 23 primary. Grover has won 71% of the vote, compared to Beckham’s 29%, according to unofficial results.

Grover, a member of the Utah House from 2006 to 2018, was elected to the Senate in 2018 following a special election for Republican Sen. Margaret Dayton’s seat after her resignation for medical reasons.

Beckham’s candidacy has been marred by controversy since before he declared his run for the GOP nomination. Beckham was charged with forcible sexual abuse, a second-degree felony, just days before he filed to run. Despite Beckham facing a felony and potential prison time if he is convicted, Utah County delegates branded the charge as a “political hit job” and approved of Beckham’s candidacy.

Since Beckham was charged, a Utah County judge approved a protective order for the alleged victim against Beckham. His next hearing in the case is scheduled for August, according to court records.

Senate District 23 previously included areas of southern Davis County and northern areas of Salt Lake County and was represented by Sen. Todd Weiler, who serves as Senate Parliamentarian. Much of that area is now Senate District 8.

Senate District 28, Republican primary: Delta, Beaver, Cedar City and Hurricane

Sen. Evan Vickers, the Senate Majority Leader, was up on his opponent Patrick Larson in the Senate District 28 race. Vickers has won 71% of the vote so far, according to unofficial early results.

Vickers was first elected to the Legislature as a representative in 2008 before joining the Senate in 2012.

The Tribune previously reported that Larson’s past social media posts show he advocated for violence against political leaders in past years.

House District 2: North Cache County

Incumbent Rep. Mike Petersen narrowly led former legislator Val Potter in the House District 2 GOP primary by a margin of just 6%, according to results on Tuesday night.

Petersen defeated Potter in 2020, and Potter is seeking to regain a spot in the Legislature.

House District 2 comprises areas of Cache County, including parts of North Logan, Hyde Park and Smithfield.

House District 4: Randolph, Morgan and Coalville

Rep. Kera Birkeland led her fellow Republican Raelene Blocker in the GOP primary for House District 4. The incumbent won 61% of the vote on Tuesday, according to unofficial early results.

Birkeland, who was appointed to the Utah House in April 2020, was the House sponsor for HB11, a bill that banned transgender athletes from competing in school sports. Blocker told The Tribune though she supports the content of the bill, she said HB11 was passed in a “completely dishonest way.

House District 4 includes portions of Rich, Morgan and Summit counties.

House District 8: Eden and Huntsville

Republican candidate Jason Kyle led Kimberly Cozzens in the House District 8 primary, capturing 63% of the early vote on Tuesday night, according to unofficial returns.

The nomination was left vacant after the incumbent, Rep. Steve Waldrip, dropped out of the race in April.

House District 10: South Ogden and Uintah

Jill Koford was ahead of Lorraine Brown for the GOP nomination in House District 10 by a margin of 14%, according to unofficial early results.

The eventual winner will face incumbent Rep. Rosemary Lesser in the general election this fall.

House District 11: Hill Air Force Base and Riverdale

Incumbent Rep. Kelly Miles was well behind Katy Hall in the GOP primary for House District 11, managing to secure only 39% of the vote so far, according to unofficial results Tuesday night.

Miles has served in the Utah Legislature since he was appointed in December 2016.

House District 18: Farmington and Centerville

Paul Cutler sat ahead of Alena Ericksen in his bid to secure the Republican nomination for House District 18, winning 61% of the vote as of Tuesday night, according to unofficial early results.

The two candidates were vying to replace Rep. Tim Hawkes, who announced he was retiring from the House in March. Hawkes later endorsed Cutler to fill his position.

Ericksen is currently a part of two lawsuits against Utah officials and the Davis School District over coronavirus restrictions.

House District 19: West Bountiful and Bountiful

Incumbent Rep. Raymond Ward was ahead of challenger Lyle Mason in his bid to regain the Republican nomination for House District 19.

As of Tuesday night, Ward was winning by a margin of 20%, according to unofficial early results.

House District 20: Woods Cross, North Salt Lake

Incumbent Rep. Melissa Garff Ballard was up on challenger Ronald Mortensen in the GOP primary for House District 20. Ballard won 65% of the vote as of Tuesday night.

Garff has been a member of the Legislature since 2019.

House District 29: Fillmore, Tooele, Delta and Wendover

Bridger Bolinder held a lead over Mark Huntsman in the GOP primary for House District 29. The vote percentage was 63% in favor of Bolinder as of Tuesday night, according to unofficial early results.

Bolinder won nearly 89% of the delegate vote during the Utah GOP convention in April. Huntsman won a little over 11%.

House District 29 is made up of large areas of western Utah, including parts of Tooele, Juab and Millard counties.

House District 41: Cottonwood Heights and Alta

Wayne Sandberg was ahead of Steve Aste in his bid to grab the GOP nomination in House District 41 by a margin of 16%, according to unofficial early results.

House District 45: South Jordan and Sandy

As of Tuesday night, incumbent Rep. Susan Pulsipher captured 63% of the vote against former state lawmaker Richard Cunningham in the Republican primary for House District 45.

Pulsipher has been in the Utah Legislature since 2017, serving in House District 50 prior to redistricting. Cunningham served in the Utah House from 2013 to 2016. He did not seek reelection and opted to run for a Utah Senate seat in District 10. He lost the primary to Sen. Lincoln Fillmore.

House District 46: Draper and Bluffdale

GOP Incumbent Rep. Jeffrey Stenquist held a slight lead over challenger Carolyn Phippen in the primary for House District 46, winning 54% of the vote so far, according to unofficial early results.

Stenquist has been a member of the House since 2019 and previously served on the Draper City Council before retiring from the council in 2017. Phippen’s campaign site emphasized her opposition to abortion and the need to restore confidence in elections.

House District 67: Duchesne, Price and Castle Dale

Incumbent Rep. Christine Watkins led challenger Tom Hansen in her bid to secure the GOP nomination for House District 67, capturing 53% of the early vote, according to unofficial results Tuesday night.

Watkins has served in the Utah House since 2017 and previously served in the Legislature from 2009 to 2013.

Watkins is a former charter school administrator and retired teacher, while Hansen is a former math teacher. Hansen has served as the chair for the Emery County GOP for the past five years.

House District 72: New Harmony, Hurricane, Virgin, Springdale and Apple Valley

Willie Billings and Joseph Elison in the GOP primary for House District 72 were essentially tied as of Tuesday night, according to unofficial early results. Billings has won 3,267 votes, while Elison has secured 3,232.

Both were vying to become the district’s new representative, as the district’s current legislator, Rep. Rex Shipp, is running for House District 71 thanks to redistricting.

House District 73: Washington and Leeds

Colin Jack led Nina Barnes in the race for the GOP nomination in House District 73 by a margin of 24%, according to unofficial early results. As of Tuesday night, Jack had captured 62% of the vote, compared to Barnes’ 38%.

The two originally were set to face off against the incumbent, Rep. Travis Seegmiller, who announced his resignation from the Legislature last month. He told House leaders that he was moving out of his district.

Jack was selected by party delegates to serve the remainder of Seegmiller’s term. The winner will run unopposed in the November election.

House District 74: Ivins, Shivwits and Santa Clara

R. Neil Walter gained the lead over Kristy Pike in the race to gain the nomination in House District 74. Walter secured 62% of the early vote, according to unofficial results Tuesday night.

The winner will replace the incumbent, Rep. Lowry Snow, who announced he would not seek reelection and retire from the Legislature. The winner will also likely be elected to the Utah House, as no other party has fielded a candidate for the November election.

This content was originally published here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top