The 89th district shocked all of Knox County last night. We had five republicans running for State Representative,Stacey Campfield, Tim Hutchison, Justin Lafferty, Jesse D. Nelson, and Guy L. Smoak. Two very well known candidates Campfield and Hutchison got less votes than I thought. Hutchinson appeared to think he could run on his name alone, assuming he would win because of his previous position as sheriff. That tactic didn’t seem to work as he only received 25.71% of the vote. However, what did shock me was Campfield’s numbers. In this race I thought he would have been much higher than Hutchinson. Campfield’s name is well known, and whether people like him or not that familiarity is hard to push aside. Also, unlike Hutchinson, Campfield put the time, effort, and money into his race. The social media presence during his campaign was very active. Utilizing two Facebook accounts, Campfield engaged in conversations, talked about issues, and created video content for what his beliefs. Going door to door was also a priority of his campaign. Considering his efforts he ended in 3rd place with 21.36%. Jesse Nelson very successful attorney in Knoxville had a presence in Knox county, but not enough to beat the more established names, which lead to 11.28% of the vote. Guy L Smoak, a doctor, is the candidate that I had to do research on. His presence on the campaign seemed absent at times and I was unaware of much of his involvement. Smoak had a total of 11.39%.
The winner of this republican primary didn’t completely shock me. Justin Lafferty was man that stood up at the republican meeting and spoke against it. He was the man that captivated the room and stunned us with his guts. Lafferty pulled in 30.27% of the votes for the Republican win. Lafferty’s results didn’t surprise me. From day one he had been knocking on doors, and getting in front of the voters. Staying away from most of the meetings and, concentrating his efforts on the individual voters proved beneficial. I followed his race closely, and appreciated his old school approach to politics.
Lafferty will run against Democrat opponent Coleen Martinez. H
Let’s see how this race plays out, and we have plenty of time until November.