Incumbents carried the day in the Port St. Joe municipal elections.

 

 

Incumbents carried the day in the Port St. Joe municipal elections.

Sitting Commissioners David Ashbrook and William Thursbay were re-elected Tuesday to their seats to claim victory in campaigns that were noteworthy for the lack of controversy.

By the end of polling, 34 percent, or 907, of the city’s 2,680 registered voters cast ballots.

The breakdown highlighted a continuing trend of more voters taking casting ballots prior to Election Day.

One more vote, 387 compared to 386, was cast during early voting than on Tuesday and another 134 voters took advantage of mailed ballots.

The incumbents won by significantly different margins.

In Group 1, Thursbay took 62 percent of the vote, 550 votes, against Carl Hopper, who garnered 38 percent, or 337 votes.

“I am humbled and grateful for the confidence the voters placed in me,” Thursbay said. “When you go in and try to take care of the good working people in the city, good things happen.”

In Group 2, Eric Langston mounted a spirited challenge against Ashbrook, who won with 471 votes, or 52 percent.

Langston was 38 votes back with 433, or 48 percent.

The margin was not small enough to trigger an automatic recount.

“You have to work it to win and I thought I worked it,” Ashbrook said. “Hopefully, I can go back and continue to help grow the local economy, slow and steady.”

Interestingly, the races also garnered different turnouts.

Nearly 20 voters who cast ballots in the Group 2 race did not pick a candidate in the Group 1 race.

The campaigns could be said to have gotten a late start from the outset.

As of the last morning for candidate qualifying, neither incumbent had a challenger; by noon of that Wednesday both incumbents had a race.