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Linn County Races Shape Up For Fall

Oregon Legislature

Linn County Republicans are on track to choose a political veteran to replace an outgoing county commissioner.

State Rep. Sherrie Sprenger announced last year that she’d leave the capitol after a dozen years to mount a run for Linn County Commission. There was a rare open seat made vacant by the retirement of Republican Will Tucker.

Sprenger was one of four candidates seeking the GOP nomination to replace Tucker. On Tuesday night, she held a commanding lead over her nearest rival, businesswoman Kerry Johnson.

Republicans have a sizeable registration edge over Democrats in Linn County. The winner of the GOP primary will face Democrat Scott Brusland in November. Brusland was unopposed for his party's nomination.

In another Linn County commission race, incumbent Republican Roger Nyquist had no opponents for the GOP nomination. There were no Democrats on the ballot for their party's nomination, although the Linn County Clerk's office reported more than 1,400 write-in votes.

In the race to replace Sprenger in the state legislature, Lebabnon grass seed farmer Jami Cate held a slight lead over Scott Sword, who describes himself as a semi-retired logging company owner. The 17th district includes portions of both Linn County and Marion County.

The Democratic nomination in the 17th district goes to Paige Hook, a Stayton city councilor who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

Chris Lehman has been reporting on Oregon issues since 2006. He joined the KLCC news department in December, 2018. Chris was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. His public broadcasting career includes stops in Louisiana and Illinois. Chris has filed for national programs including “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”
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