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  • Writer's pictureRoger Sims, Journal Staff

Commission races to be contested in both districts


MOUND CITY – Next Monday, June 3, at noon is the deadline for candidates to file for federal, state, county, and township offices. With time running out, races are beginning to take shape.


As of Friday, May 31, at 3 p.m., Pleasanton Republicans Vicki Leonard and Rod Earnest will face each other in the Aug. 6 primary for the District 2 county commission seat currently held by Danny McCullough. There is speculation that another candidate may file before the noon deadline on Monday, however, that has not been confirmed.


Incumbent Commissioner Jim Johnson has filed to retain his post as commissioner from District 3. Johnson will face fellow Republican Richard Morrell in the primary election. Both men are from the rural Mound City area.


Patrick Huntley has filed to run for Linn County Sheriff, a post currently held by Kevin Friend. Friend announced more than a year ago he did not intend to seek re-election. Huntley, a Pleasanton resident who has sought the post before, will face fellow Republican James Akes of Parker in that primary. Akes is currently a deputy with the sheriff’s office.


In other county races, Assistant County Attorney Justin Meeks has filed for the county attorney race and is so far unopposed. The Fort Scott Republican so far has no opposition. Current County Attorney Burton Harding indicated last year he would not seek re-election.


Three Republicans are unopposed in three separate contests. Incumbent County Clerk David Lamb of Mound City is seeking re-election. So is incumbent Register of Deeds Kristy Schmitz of Parker. Joannie Reed of Fulton is seeking the post of county treasurer, replacing Janet Kleweno who has opted not to seek re-election.


In all of the county races, the winner of the primary vote is expected to cruise to an easy victory in the November general election. No Democrat, Libertarian or unaffiliated candidates have filed for the posts.


In the race for the Kansas House of Representatives, former Linn County Commissioner Rick James of La Cygne and Joshua Jones of Fort Scott, both Republicans, are the two candidates remaining after Kaety Bowers of Fulton withdrew from the race. Both James and Jones are Republicans and barring a filing by a Democrat, Libertarian or unaffiliated candidate, the winner of the primary will be unopposed in November’s genera election.


While almost all of Linn County is in Kansas House District 4, Liberty Township including Parker is in District 9. Garnett Republican Fred Gardner is seeking to be reelected to that post and so far has no opposition.


In the state Senate race for District 12, which includes all of Linn County, incumbent Caryn Tyson, a Parker Republican has filed for reelection. Political newcomer Stetson Kern, a Pleasanton Republican, has thrown his hat in the ring hoping to unseat her. Again, a win in the primary will all but assure the winner to be the winner in November.


Three Republicans and one Democrat are seeking the U.S. House of Representatives seat being vacated by Jake LaTurner. 


Former state Attorney General Derek Schmidt of Independence, Jeff Kahrs of Topeka, and Shawn Tiffany of Delevan are the three Republicans seeking to win the August primary to advance to the general election.


Matt Kleinman of Kansas City, Kan., is the Democrat who has filed for the seat.


Several people have filed for township posts, and as of Friday, none of them had opponents.


They are:

Blue Mound Township: Benda Beth, treasurer, and Polly Ann Yates, trustee.

Centerville Township: Brenda Conner, treasurer, and Karen Whitcomb, trustee.

Liberty Township: Barbara Hines, treasurer, and Cheri Dunlop, trustee.

Lincoln Township: Mike Van Vlack, trustee, and no one has filed for treasurer.

Mound City Township: Carol Wood, treasurer, and Gary Schmitz, trustee.

Paris Township: Jean Peterson, treasurer, and Carmen Self, trustee.

Potosi Township: Steve Ellis, treasurer, and Tel-Lea Cox, trustee.


As of Friday afternoon, no one had signed up for either the treasurer or trustee post in Scott, Sheridan, Stanton, and Valley townships.

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