Cherokee Special Election Turnout Higher Than Expected
Officials initially predicted a 5 percent turnout, but numbers were closer to 10 percent.
More Cherokee County voters showed up the polls to cast ballots in Tuesday's special election than officials anticipated.
In unofficial results, nearly 10 percent of voters in Cherokee County went to the polls on Tuesday to vote in the election while turnout in the Fulton County portion of the district hovered around 5.6 percent.
Out of 88,089 registered voters in both districts, 8,546 or 9.7 percent, cast ballots in the Georgia Senate District 21 and Georgia House District 21 races.
Cherokee overall has around 129,000 registered voters.
In Cherokee, Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Brandon Beach defeated former State Rep. Sean Jerguson of Holly Springs with 52 percent, or 3,925 votes. Jerguson received 48 percent, or 3,660 votes in the county.
Cherokee County Election Supervisor Janet Munda said she originally predicted only 5 percent of registered voters would cast ballots in the election.
Munda said no problems occurred at the polls on Tuesday, other than residents learning they were not eligible to vote in the election.
"Some voters would go to precincts thinking they were eligible to vote for a particular candidate, but once they looked at the maps on the wall the precincts, they clearly understood they were not in that district any longer,” she said.
In Fulton County, Beach, who lives in Alpharetta, was the clear winner with 81 percent, or 1,545 votes over Jerguson's 19 percent, or 371 votes.
Overall, Beach carried the district with 58 percent, or 5,470 votes, compared to Jerguson's 42 percent, or 4,031 votes.
Broken down, the senate district in Cherokee has 75,212 registered voters. In Fulton, the district includes 34,646 registered voters.
The House District 21 race, which had 32,858 registered voters in the district, will head to a Feb. 5 run-off, as neither of the four candidates received the 50 percent plus one majority needed to avoid another election.
Republican Scot Turner received 1,496 votes, or 46.39 percent of the vote while Republican candidate Brian Laurens came in second place with 971 votes, or 30.11 percent.
Democrat Natalie Bergeron earned 21.43 percent, or 691 votes, while Republican Kenneth Mimbs received 2 percent, or 67 votes.
Both Laurens and Turner will be on the run-off ballot.