Wiggins retains commission seat; Edwards beaten in BOE race

News Staff Writer

Not a lot of Escambia County voters went to the polls for the March 5 Super Tuesday Presidential Primary, but those who did were for the most part of a like mind.
The Escambia County Commission’s chairman was re-elected over a political newcomer by a virtual 2-1 margin to the District 2 seat he has held for 16 years, while an even higher percentage of voters in Board of Education District 3 decided that a political newcomer should replace the incumbent after 12 years.
Raymond Wiggins easily won re-election to his fifth term by a 2-1 margin (760-381) over Lew Najor, a project manager for Crowder Gulf, in the commission race and will resume the seat he has held since 2008.
The results of that race were almost completely opposite those experienced by the county’s other incumbent seeking another term.
Jerry Wilson, a Georgia-Pacific Brewton Mill employee for the past 15 years, drew 512 votes to easily defeat incumbent BOE member Mike Edwards, who has held the seat for the past 12 years. Edwards got just 223 votes and will give up his seat in November.
Neither Wilson nor Wiggins faces opposition in November.
According to the Alabama Secretary of State website, only 5,392 (19.54 percent) of the county’s 27,601 registered voters went to the polls. In all but one of the state and national races on the Republican and Democratic ballots, Escambia County’s electorate continued to give overwhelming votes of support to one particular candidate.
Those results:
*President of the United States — Of the 4,605 county Republicans who voted, 89.23 of them (4,109) gave Donald Trump the nod. Democrats were just as gung-ho for incumbent Joe Biden, marking his name on 686 of the 747 ballots cast here (91.83 percent).
*1st District of Alabama U.S. Representative — Incumbent Jerry Carl easily outdistanced challenger Barry Moore (3,093-1,283) in voting among local Republicans, although the incumbent congressman was beaten in statewide balloting.
*Chief Justice of Alabama Supreme Court — Escambia County gave Sarah Stewart two-thirds of its GOP vote.
*President, Alabama Public Service Commission — Twinkle Cavanaugh was named on 65.22 percent of 3,997 local ballots.
The only close contests in county voting came in the race for Judge of Civil Appeals Court, where Chad Hanson was named on 1,843 local ballots and Stephen Davis Parker got 1,662, and in the voting on Amendment 1, which was split almost down the middle. Rejecting the amendment were 2,384 local voters (51.8 percent), while 2,217 voted in favor of it.