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Baria, Wicker lead Alcorn County voting

By Jebb Johnston

Alcorn County Democratic voters favored David Baria as the candidate to take on incumbent U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker in November, while Wicker easily carried the county in the Republican primary.

Voters showed little interest in Tuesday's congressional primary election, with only a few of the county's 17 precincts topping 100 votes cast.

With a six-candidate field in the Democratic primary, it appeared likely the race will head to a runoff in three weeks between Baria, a member of the Mississippi House of Representatives for District 122, and Howard Sherman, who is perhaps best known as the husband of actress Sela Ward.

Baria led the Democratic field in the county with 182 votes followed by Sherman, 106; Omeria Scott, 25; Jerone Garland, 22; Jensen Bohren, 20; and Victor G. Maurice Jr., 11.

Wicker took 1,014 votes, or 83 percent, with challenger Richard Warren Boyanton trailing far behind with 200.

Including absentee votes, the county had 1,601 ballots cast on Tuesday. Eleven residents cast affidavit ballots, which are scheduled to be considered on Wednesday. There were no affidavit ballots related to voter identification issues.

Machine votes numbered as few as eight at the small Bethel precinct, where one person voted in the Democratic primary and seven in the Republican primary.

Incumbent U.S. Rep. Trent Kelly (R) was unopposed for his party nomination, while Iuka native Randy Mack Wadkins was the only candidate for that seat in the Democratic primary.

The seats held by Wicker and Kelly will appear on the November ballot alongside the special election to replace Sen. Thad Cochran.