Trusted local news leader for Kingman, Arizona & Mohave County
Fri, Feb. 28

Sockwell wins tight supervisor race

Bullhead City Republican Tom Sockwell emerged as the winner of the tight race for the District 2 Mohave County Supervisor following the final tally of votes Wednesday afternoon.

Sockwell, who trailed Democrat Jim Jones of Fort Mojave by 149 votes on election night Nov.

7, picked up 1,013 votes during the tally, bringing his total to 5,009.

That gave him 83 more votes than Jones, who picked up 791 votes during the tally.

The tally did not affect the results of other county races, with District 1 incumbent Buster Johnson maintaining his lead over Joe Tamberella and District 1 Republican candidate Pete Byers continuing to enjoy more votes than Democrat John Collins.

Johnson gained 3,240 votes compared with 1,424 for Tamberella, and Byers picked up 1,438 votes compared with 784 for Collins and 138 votes for independent Randy Lyles.

The tally, which took about one hour and 15 minutes, entailed counting roughly 9,700 ballots, County Elections Director Brad Nelson said.

"What we will be counting today is approximately 8,000 early ballots that were received on or before election day by the (county) recorder but were not verified to be counted," Nelson said before beginning the tally.

Election workers counted about 6,500 early ballots on election night.

Recorder Joan McCall also verified 1,156 ballots, Nelson said.

Many of those ballots may have involved voters who showed up at a different polling site than the one they were assigned.

Ballots for voters who cast ballots at polling places in the wrong legislative districts were disqualified.

Nelson then loaded the ballots into a machine that was supposed to process as many as 600 per minute.

More than 10 people, including candidates Sockwell, Jones and Collins, awaited the tally while gathering in a conference room in the county building on Beale Street.

"I want to thank my committee," Sockwell, a retired aerospace project manager who has lived in Bullhead City 12 years, said following the tally.

"I want to thank all the people that supported me."

Sockwell, 67, continued, "I'm happy, but I am still a little bit in shock."

Jones, a barber, congratulated Sockwell on his victory and indicated that he would not seek a recount.

"You're the better man," Jones told Sockwell.

"You got it.


Sockwell replaces Bullhead City Republican Jim Zaborsky, who did not run for another term.

The other candidate in the race, independent Jim Howell of Bullhead City, picked up 170 votes in the tally, bringing his vote total to 1,197.

While the tally was completed, the election results will not become official until the canvass is released at the supervisors meeting on Monday, Nelson said.

The canvass will contain precinct breakdowns.

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