TAHLEQUAH, Okla.- Cherokee Nation voters in Adair, Delaware and Ottawa counties have spoken, and they have selected Frankie Hargis of Stilwell to represent them on the tribe's Council for the next nineteen months.
Hargis faced another Stilwell resident, Joe Adair, in Saturday's runoff after the two candidates finished atop a seven-person field during a Nov. 12 special election to finish the term of Deputy Principal Chief Joe Crittenden's vacated District 2 seat. That seat's term expires in June of 2013.
With more than 1,500 votes cast in the runoff, Hargis received 882, or 57.2 percent, and Adair received 660, or 42.8 percent.
Cherokee Nation Election Commission Chairwoman Susan Plumb said the runoff results will remain unofficial until after the commission meets at 9 a.m. Monday to certify them. Although results are not official until certified by the Cherokee Nation Election Commission, it is not expected that results will change significantly.
Plumb said she was pleased with voter turnout, considering Saturday's inclement weather and other factors competing for voters' attention such as holiday shopping and a bedlam game.
"I think this shows that people are very interested in exercising their right to vote," said Plumb.
Hargis joins Tribal Council members Curtis Snell of Rose, Okla., and Jodie Fishinghawk of Stilwell in representing Cherokee Nation's District 2 citizens.
Cherokee Nation will hold another special election on Jan. 14, 2012, to fill the District 1 (Cherokee and Wagoner counties) seat vacated when Principal Chief Bill John Baker took office in October. Five candidates have filed for that office. They are Joe Byrd, Brandon Girty, Geneva Reeves and Raymond Vann, all of Tahlequah, and Park Hill resident Pam Iron.