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Adair County 'overwhelmed' by number of absentee voters, elected officials react to wins

In Adair County, 8,763 ballots were cast - a voter turnout of just over 60 percent. (KTVO)

"More overwhelming than expected." Those are the words Adair County Clerk Sandy Collop used to describe election night on Tuesday.

In Adair County, 8,763 ballots were cast - a voter turnout of just over 60 percent.

That number includes 1,063 absentee ballots.

Thousands of residents were waiting on the Adair County results. The ballot counting was finally done just after 11:00 p.m.

Collop told KTVO there were a couple reasons for that.

"We had an extremely large amount of absentee people, people that voted before election day. Those all have to be entered manually, and we have write-ins, that takes a really long time because all of those ballots have to be reviewed by the judges. So, it was just an accumulation of a lot of things going on."

Collop adds that many were both pleased and surprised at the number of people who voted in the midterm election.

"We knew it was going to be a good one, but I'll tell you, it did catch us all by surprise. We thought it might be the size of the presidential, and by God, it just about made it."

For the 2016 presidential election, 10,389 ballots were cast in Adair County. That's a 68 percent of registered voters.

As far as other issues related to this election in Adair County, Collop says they were minor.

"We had a few issues with maybe some ballots not being taken as readily as people would like, you know, because it takes longer to vote with these new machines."

In county races, Adair County Associate Circuit Judge Kristie Swaim (D), faced a challenge from Independent candidate Benjamin Gray. But, she came out on top, with 65 percent of the vote.

Swaim told KTVO she's looking forward to a few big things during her new term.

"We are getting new equipment, we are doing more with the Missouri Courts and we are doing more with the electronics that are coming. I think we are also going to see some renovations in the courtroom to accommodate all the new equipment and make it a little more clerk friendly."

In the Adair County Circuit Clerk's race, Incumbent Linda Decker (D) was being challenged by Angie Sullivan (R). Decker squeezed by to keep her spot, receiving 54 percent of the vote.

"I just believed that the voters believe that I am working for the best interest in the circuit clerk's office, and I appreciate that."

Republican Mark Shahan beat out Democrat Richard "Rick" Steele to be Adair County's new Presiding Commissioner.

"I was very satisfied with the outcome, almost 60 percent of the vote and so I was really happy about that. With that said, I think the expectations may be high, so I'm ready to get to work."

Elected officials will be sworn-in and take office in January.

To view full election results, click here.

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