Republican primary:Chuck Fleischmann - 31,940Geoffery Suhmer Smith - 3,069Allan Levene - 3,056Democratic primary:Melody Shekari - 8,651Michael Friedman - 5,319George Ryan Love - 2,066All vote totals are unofficial until certified by the Election Commission; some vote totals include write-in votes
Hamilton County general and Tennessee primary election stories
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- Sohn: Don't take your vote for granted
- Anti-incumbent fever fails to take hold in Tennessee primaries
- Greeson: Sadly, moral indignation did not lead to civil obligation
- Voter turnout plummets for Hamilton County, state elections
- Sohn: When our voter turnout equals voter flame-out
- Cooper: Mayor Andy Berke's election 'results' mixed
- McCormick effort to call special House session to oust Durham fails to get 66 signatures
- Six Tennessee House primaries decided by fewer than 100 votes
- Kustoff takes aim at House seat after winning GOP primary
- Sohn: Voters looked for change in local races
- Cooper: Hamilton County voters want board accountability
- Voters oust three of four incumbents from Hamilton County school board
- Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, Melody Shekari win big in U.S. House primaries
- Rep. Scott DesJarlais turns back tough challenge from Grant Starrett
- Incumbent Rhonda Thurman wins District 1 Hamilton County school board race
- Kathy Lennon beats Jonathan Welch for Hamilton County's District 2 school board seat
- Tiffanie Robinson unseats George Ricks from school board in District 4
- Joe Wingate bumps Donna Horn from District 7 school board seat
- Marty Haynes defeats Mark Siedlecki in Hamilton County assessor race
- Khristy Wilkinson is Democratic choice to face Todd Gardenhire for state Senate seat
- JoAnne Favors wins landslide primary victory in 28th District race
- Rep. Mike Carter trounces his Republican primary rival in state House District 29 race
- Election briefs: Incumbents hold Lookout commission seats
- Durham loses GOP primary after sexual harassment allegations
- Kustoff wins GOP nomination in open Tennessee U.S. House race
- Coverage of Tennessee Primary and Hamilton County general elections
- Where to vote in the Hamilton County general and Tennessee primary elections
- Times endorsements for Hamilton County general, Tennessee primary elections
- Free Press endorsements for Hamilton County general, Tennessee primary elections
- Congressional, legislative races are focus of Tennessee primary
- Tennessee voters go to the poll to decide on U.S. House nominees
U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann rolled to an easy victory in Thursday's 3rd Congressional District Republican primary as the congressman from Ooltewah won over two little-known challengers.
The three-term incumbent racked up more than 26,000 votes against Geoffery Suhmer Smith of Athens, Tenn., and Allan Levene, who lives in Kennesaw, Ga., and made an unsuccessful congressional run there earlier this year. Smith and Levene each picked up 8 percent of the primary total.
"I am so overwhelmed with the margin of victory," Fleischmann said in an interview Thursday night. "We thought we were going to do well, but no idea we would have such an overwhelming win from Chattanooga in the south all the way up through Oak Ridge to Scott County in the north."
Fleischmann said he had no plans to take time off but would start preparing Friday for the November general election.
He will face Democrat Melody Shekari, who pulled away from two challengers to win the Democratic nomination.
Shekari, who has a master's degree in public administration and a law degree, won 8,613 votes. UTC communications professor Dr. Michael Friedman took 5,295, and George Ryan Love, who is disabled and works part-time in retail, won 2,046."I am so incredibly thankful for the thousands of voters who came out and voted for a change," Shekari said in a statement Thursday evening. "We had a great campaign filled with volunteers from across the district who knocked on doors, called total strangers, and put their heart and souls into this campaign to build a better Tennessee."
Shekari has never run for public office before, although she was the student body president at the University of Southern California, a school with some 20,000 students.
Also on the Nov. 8 general election ballot are three independent candidates: Topher Kersting of Chattanooga, Cassandra Mitchell of Heiskell and Rick Tyler of Ocoee. Tyler has drawn national attention for billboard signs saying "Make America White Again." The Southern Poverty Law Center describes Tyler as a "racist."
The district strongly favors Republicans.
The 3rd Congressional District includes all or parts of 11 counties, including Hamilton and Bradley counties in the south, and then meanders north up to Anderson County before ending at the Kentucky border.
This year's GOP primary was Fleischmann's first easy GOP primary victory after three previous hard-fought battles. His first Republican primary in 2010 was a multicandidate slugfest for an open seat. After a bitter battle with former Tennessee Republican Party Chairwoman Robin Smith, Fleischmann 31,940 votes to Smith's 3,069.
Fleischmann handily won the general election that year. But in 2012, Weston Wamp, son of the former congressman, and Athens businessman Scottie Mayfield fought to take him out in the GOP primary. The resulting battle ended with a 39 percent plurality for Fleischmann.
In 2014, Weston Wamp tried again in another hard-fought primary contest where Fleischmann eked out a 51-49 percent victory. Wamp opted not to run this time.
Contact staff writer Steve Johnson at email@example.com or 423-757-6673.