Phillips County News - One Nation, Under God

By Mark Hebert

Christofferson, Lytle and LaBrie take contested primaries


The 2018 Primary Election ended late last Tuesday night and in the only three contested races, Bruce Christofferson won the Republican nod for Phillips County Commissioner, Lynnel LaBrie won the primary for County Clerk and Recorder and Jerry Lytle won a close race to replace current Sheriff Scott Moran as he retires.

The race for the Republican nomination for Phillips County Sheriff between Lytle and Undersheriff Burt Peigneux was decided by just 18 votes, 770 to 752 (and there was also one write-in vote in this race.)

In the race for the Republican nomination for Phillips County Commissioner, incumbent Commissioner Christofferson received 47- percent of the vote (729) while challengers Randy Shores received 39-percent (605), and Darla Niebur received nearly 14-percent (212.)

In the only other contested primary race in the county (there are no Democratic candidates running in this year’s election) Labrie defeated Connie Zanto in the race to replace the County’s current Clerk and Recorder, Marian Ereaux, who will also retire from service when her term is up. LaBrie received 74-percent of the vote (1,120 total) while Zanto earned 392 votes.

Nearly 62-percent of registered voters cast their ballots in Phillips County (1,669 votes cast by 2,704 registered voters) while statewide, total voter turnout was 41-percent (281,416 out of 679,231 taking part in the primary vote.)

In races where the candidates faced no opposition in Phillips County elections, Edward A. Amestoy won his primary bid for County Attorney; Darlene Kolczak won the nod for County Superintendent; and Jean Mavencamp won the Treasurer and Assessor primary. All three of the candidates currently hold the position they are running for in the November election).

Malta’s Casey Knudsen will most likely retain his seat as State Representative from District 33 as he ran unopposed in that primary.

For U.S. Representative, Phillips County approved of Greg Gianforte on the Republican side (earning a total of 1,334 votes) and John Heenan won for the Democrats (36 votes.) The November election will pit Gianforte, Heenan and Green Party candidate Doug Campbell against each other (Campbell received a total of 1,516 votes statewide, Gianforte 135,597 and Heenan, in a six-person contest, 35,154.)

In the U.S. Senator race, John Tester, incumbent, won the Democratic primary with 113,815 statewide votes (108 in Phillips County), Matt Rosendale won the Republican nod with 51,549 statewide votes (he won in Phillips County as well with 30-percent of the vote in a four-person race), and Steve Kelly will represent the Green Party.


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