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Republican Primary In Linn, Marion Counties Still Too Close To Call

Chris Lehman

More than one week after the election, the results of a Republican legislative primary in parts of Linn and Marion County is still too close to call.

As of Thursday, Jami Cate holds a 17-vote lead over the current second-place finisher, Scott Sword. The winner of the GOP primary in House District 17 will face Democrat Paige Hook in November.

Cate’s lead over Sword has narrowed since Election Night, but it’s still not close enough to trigger an automatic recount. Oregon law requires a margin of less than one-fifth of one percent of the total votes earned by the top two candidates in a race in order for there to be a taxpayer-funded recount of the votes. Campaigns may elect to pay for a recount, although few opt for that.

The HD-17 race does not feature an incumbent. State Rep. Sherrie Sprenger, R-Scio, announced last year she would not seek re-election to the state legislature. Sprenger is running for a spot on the Linn County Commission. She was the top vote-getting in the May 19 Republican primary for that seat.

Chris Lehman has been reporting on Oregon issues since 2006. He joined the KLCC news department in December, 2018 and became News Director in March, 2023. 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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