Tom Keyes, Gaines Co. Judge-Elect
Tom Keyes, Gaines Co. Judge-Elect

Gaines County's March 4 Democratic/Republican Party Primary election results became official on Thursday with just one provisional voter added to the election total, according to officials with the Gaines County Election Administration Office on Friday.


In the March 4 process,  Seminole resident and former Gaines County Judge, Tom Keyes, defeated fellow Seminole challenger M.D. "Mickey" Browne in the highest profile race of six local election decisions faced by Gaines County voters as part of the March 4 Democratic/Republican Party Primaries.


Keyes, according to election tabulations received from the Gaines County Elections Administration Office on March 4, received 980 (63.2-percent) of 1,552 votes cast in the judge's election, compared to 572 votes (36.8-percent) received by Browne, the former 22-year veteran Chief of the Seminole Police Dept.


According to a break down of election numbers by the county's eight election day voting boxes, Keyes won in every voting precinct with voting margins ranging from 57.11-percent in the  voting precinct box No. 3  (southwestern Seminole/southwestern Gaines County) to an 82.14-percent margin in voting precinct box No. 5 (Loop community area).


Keyes, who served as Gaines County Judge from 2006 through 2010, will take over the role currently held by Gaines County Judge Lance Celander on Jan. 1, 2015.


Celander, who had initially filed re-election intentions early in the 2014 election process, withdrew in the 11th hour, citing that he would be seeking business opportunities in the private sector.


Joining Keyes as a winner in March 4 election was incumbent Pct. 4 Commissioner Biz Houston, who defeated challenger Ricky Baccus, 259-95.

Houston, who was appointed in 2011 to replace former Pct. 4 Commissioner Charlie Lopez, won a successful unexpired term bid in 2012 for the seat, and will now look forward to his first full official term in office come January 2015.


In the other locally contested race, Seagraves resident Calvin Sellers defeated fellow Seagraves residents Henry Winsor and Eddie Pillow to become the new Justice of the Peace, Pct. 2.


Sellers, in the March 4 election, secured 65.13-percent of the vote, which was more than the required 50-percent plus-one requirement to secure an election in a multi-person race. Sellers will replace the outgoing Pct. 2 JP, B.W. Baccum, who opted not to seek re-election this cycle, citing health reasons.


No local races will see runoff elections as a result of the March 4 Democratic/Republican party primaries, however, there will be State-level runoff elections slated for May, according to local election officials.


Details of those May runoffs will be made available in a future edition of the Seminole Sentinel.


In total, 1,656 of the 7,796 eligible Gaines County voters came out to participate in the March 4 party primaries, which totals to a 21.24-percent turnout.