The 16th District in the Kentucky State Senate will remain in Republican hands, following a special election held last Tuesday, December 18 across the six-county district.
Sara Beth Gregory, current State Representative from Monticello, was the easy winner of the race against Democrat school teacher Bill Conn of Whitley County.
Gregory will fill the two-year unexpired term left vacant when former Senate President David L. Williams stepped down this past fall to accept Gov. Steve Beshear’s appointment to fill out the 40th Judicial Circuit Judge seat vacated by the untimely death of Judge Eddie C. Lovelace in September. Williams took over the judge’s seat on November 2.
When the senate seat became vacant, each party had until November 20 to choose–by party caucus across the district with each county participating–a nominee. Gov. Beshear, via executive order, scheduled the special election for December 18.
As expected, voter turnout in the one race balloting was extremely light across the entire district, with only 7,684 votes in all six counties combined casting ballots.
Gregory easily carried the district by over a four to one margin, receiving 6,244 votes to Conn’s 1,440 votes–carrying all counties, including Conn’s home county by almost a two to one margin.
In Clinton County, only 897 voters took the time to cast a ballot in the race, with Gregory receiving 785 votes to Conn’s 112.
Other county breakdowns (with Gregory winning all counties,) the totals were as follows: Cumberland, 558 to 70; McCreary, 879 to 127; Monroe, 754 to 98; Wayne (Gregory’s home county), 1,824 to 265 and Whitley (Conn’s home county), 1,444 to 768.
The election of Gregory will create another special election in her House of Representative district (which does not include Clinton County.)
Gregory, a native of Monticello, and a 2000 graduate of Monticello High School, was elected to serve in the Kentucky House of Representatives in 2011.
While in the House, Gregory was named as Vice-Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and also named to serve on the Agriculture and Small Business and Banking and Insurance committees.