published Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

John Graham wins Marion County mayor primary

  • photo
    John Graham stands in front of the Marion County Courthouse in this file photo.
    Photo by Tim Barber /Chattanooga Times Free Press.


Democratic primary

County mayor (unexpired term)

John Graham: 1,577

Mack Reeves: 1,163

Marion County mayor appointee John Graham held off challenger Mack Reeves for the Democratic slot on the August general election ballot with a win in Super Tuesday's local primary contest.

"I'm just gratified that I was able to win another countywide election," Graham said. "I'm glad to have jumped this hurdle, and I'm ready to go on to the next election in August."

Administrator of Elections Gary Reames said voter turnout through the day was slow.

Democratic primary winner Graham will face Republican candidate Gary Ellis in the battle to serve out the remaining two-year term, records show.

Graham was appointed in December 2010 to replace the late County Mayor David Kirk, who died in November 2010, until the seat could be decided on the August general election ballot.

Kirk died of complications from a horseback riding accident. County Commission Chairman Gene Hargis became interim mayor until commissioners met to vote on an official replacement.

Graham was serving his 15th year as road superintendent when he was appointed.

All vote totals, which include federally mandated provisional ballots, are unofficial until certified by the Tennessee Division of Elections.

about Ben Benton...

Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...

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