Logan Wilde maintains slim lead in District 53 race
Morgan County Council member Logan Wilde was able to maintain a small lead last week over longtime incumbent House Representative Mel Brown in his quest for a spot on the Republican Party ticket in the District 53 race.
As of Friday, the margin between Wilde and Brown in the primary election had shrunk to only 10 votes. When the last batch of results was posted on Thursday, Wilde showed a larger lead with 14 votes. However, as more ballots slowly trickled in, Brown closed the gap. He was not immediately available for comment on Friday.
The current district-wide tally shows 2,490 votes for Wilde and 2,480 votes for Brown. District 53 includes large swaths of Daggett, Rich, Morgan, Duchesne and Summit counties, most of which have conducted official canvases. Summit and Daggett counties will conduct canvasses on July 12.
“I am still very cautiously optimistic, but the way this thing keeps swinging it could go either way,” Wilde said in an interview with The Park Record on Friday. “The one county that I didn’t have any information on was Rich. Now that they have canvassed I’m feeling a little better, but I’m still waiting nervously.”
Wilde said he never anticipated receiving the support that he has, adding that “I assumed Mel would win because he had the name recognition.”
“I was hoping for 40 percent going into this and I was very ecstatic with the results,” Wilde said. “I think my message has resonated with people and I’m shocked looking at the overall numbers because we’ve had quite a voter turnout with almost 40 percent of the voters.”
A new law recently passed by the Utah Legislature requires that election results be posted on Tuesdays and Fridays between noon and 3 p.m. on the days leading up to the official canvass. Summit County did not post an update on Tuesday because it received less than 20 ballots, according to Summit County Clerk Kent Jones. However, the clerk’s office counted 27 ballots county wide on Friday. Of those, eight votes were for Brown and five were for Wilde. The rest did not count for the District 53 race.
“The results won’t be finalized until Tuesday when everyone is canvassed,” Jones said. “The counties that haven’t done it yet, we may still have some more to add or we not, that remains to be seen because we added today.”
Brown garnered a staggering lead in Summit County with more than 65 percent of the votes. According to the unofficial results, Brown had collected 1,357 votes to Wilde’s 718 from within the Summit County portion of District 53, which includes: Park West, Kimball Junction, Promontory, Snyder’s Mill, Moose Hollow, Silver Springs, Jeremy Ranch, all of North and South Summit, and parts of Pinebrook.
The new release system has been somewhat difficult to coordinate because not all of the counties are releasing their results at the same time, Jones said, adding that it really affects a multi-county race.
The winner of the primary will go on to face Democrat Cole R. Capener in November.
To view Summit Countys election results, go to http://summitcounty.org/DocumentCenter/View/3528. To view the state-wide results from the lieutenant governors office, go to http://electionresults.utah.gov/elections/.
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