While there are pending ballots throughout the state, all precincts have now reported so that the Secretary of State has finally called the election for Ann Kirkpatrick, the winner over Jonathan Paton in Congressional District 1.
The balloting was a long, hard slog with Paton holding a commanding lead from the beginning of the vote count, but as more of those rural district ballots collected through Wednesday afternoon, larger numbers mounted for Kirkpatrick.
The unofficial tally by late Wednesday showed Kirkpatrick had amassed 49 percent of the vote to Paton's 45 percent. Kim Allen, the Libertarian contender, had under 6 percent.
It was a joyous return to the Congressional seat for Kirkpatrick. She held the office in Washington from 2008 through 2010, but was defeated by Paul Gosar, who jumped into the District-4 Congressional race this year, after he worried redistricting would weaken his chances in the north.
""The voters of District 1 have spoken, and I will never forget that they are the reason I am returning to Congress. I will be deeply honored to represent them again," Kirkpatrick said Wednesday.
"I look forward to once again representing the good people of the District - my extended family."
Kirkpatrick ran feverishly for re-election, almost since Gosar won the seat from her. Redistricting seemed to give the Northern Arizona native a leg up, but Paton captured southern Arizona votes. He calls Oro Valley home, near Tucson.
Paton, reportedly, was not willing to immediately concede saying he would wait
Kirkpatrick grew up in Eastern Arizona, graduated from the University of Arizona and became a lawyer. She was the first female Deputy Coconino County Attorney. She now lives in Flagstaff.
Posted: Saturday, November 10, 2012
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District 1 voters made the right choice. Jonathon Paton worked closely with lobbyists to protect the interests of the payday loan industry in 2008. He would have been a sure vote for them in Washington where the payday loan folks are trying to override state authority. Congratulations to Ann Kirkpatrick.
Posted: Friday, November 9, 2012
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Well now she will have a second chance to walk out on the voting public. The people she cares so much about. Such a shame she's back.