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Incumbents hold large leads in legislative districts near Tucson

Incumbents hold large leads in legislative districts near Tucson

From the Election 2020: Here's what Southern Arizona races look like so far series

An election worker processes early voting ballots at Pima County Elections Center. Incumbents and veteran lawmakers looked likely to hold most legislative district seats.

Incumbents and veteran lawmakers appear poised to hold nearly every seat in five legislative districts near Tucson.

Election officials were still counting ballots Wednesday afternoon, but initial results showed all but one of the legislative seats likely would go to incumbents or lawmakers trying to move between the state Senate and the state House of Representatives.

Between 26,000 and 34,000 early ballots were left to count on Wednesday afternoon, Pima County officials said. Officials also were working to verify about 18,300 provisional ballots.

The majority of votes came through early ballots, but in-person voting at polling places also proved crucial for both Democratic and Republican candidates, according to preliminary election results released by the Arizona secretary of state.

Legislative District 2

On Tucson’s south side, Democrat Rosanna Gabaldón maintained a large lead in the race for the state Senate seat in LD 2.

Gabaldón, who currently serves as a state representative for the district, had 47,139 votes, including 32,537 votes from early ballots and 14,602 votes at polling places.

Newcomer Mark Workman, a Republican, had 29,276 votes, including 20,439 votes from early ballots and 8,837 votes at polling places.

A similar story is playing out in the race for the district’s two seats in the state House of Representatives. Two Democratic candidates who already serve in the Legislature are leading a Republican newcomer.

Incumbent Daniel Hernandez had 42,033 votes, including 29,687 votes through early ballots and another 12,346 votes at polling places.

Andrea Dalessandro, a Democrat who currently serves as the district’s state senator, had 40,347 votes, including 28,974 votes through early ballots and another 11,373 votes at polling places.

Republican Deborah McEwen had 29,759 votes, including 21,067 votes through early ballots and 8,692 votes at polling places.

LD 2 covers south-side neighborhoods east of Nogales Highway, South Tucson, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Sahuarita, Green Valley, Arivaca and Santa Cruz County.

The district is home to about 51,500 registered Democrats, 29,600 registered Republicans and 38,300 independents.

Legislative District 11

Northwest of Tucson, votes at polling places appear to be playing a key role in helping three Republican incumbents hold their seats in LD 11.

Republican Sen. Vince Leach led the race to hold the district’s seat in the state Senate. He had 60,588 votes, while newcomer JoAnna Mendoza, a Democrat, had 53,623 votes.

Leach received 14,075 votes at polling places, while Mendoza trailed with 4,858 votes. Leach received 46,513 votes through early ballots and Mendoza received 48,765 votes.

In the race for the district’s two seats in the state House of Representatives, strong showings by Republican incumbents at polling places tilted the race in their favor.

Rep. Bret Roberts received 11,822 votes at polling places and Rep. Mark Finchem received 11,969. Democrat Felipe Perez received less than half those tallies, with 4,848 votes at polling places.

Perez received more votes through early ballots than his Republican rivals. Perez received 49,180 votes through early ballots, for a total of 54,028 votes. Roberts received 46,065 votes through early ballots, for a total of 57,887 votes. Finchem received 45,248 votes through early ballots, for a total of 57,217 votes.

LD 11 covers Oro Valley, Catalina, Marana, Avra Valley, Picture Rocks and part of Pinal County. The district includes about 48,700 registered Democrats, 65,100 registered Republicans and 52,700 independents.

Legislative District 9

On Tucson’s north side, two Democratic incumbents likely will fend off a challenge from a Republican newcomer in the race for two state representative seats in LD 9.

Rep. Randall Friese had 60,275 votes and Rep. Pamela Powers Hannley had 59,982 votes. Republican Brendan Lyons had 41,307 votes.

Friese and Powers Hannley each received about 58,000 votes through early ballots and 2,300 votes at polling places. Lyons received 34,316 votes through early ballots and 6,991 votes at polling places.

LD 9 includes portions of Oro Valley, Marana east of Interstate 10, across Tucson to west of North Harrison Road. The district’s southern boundary is East Speedway to north of East Ina Road taking in Catalina Foothills.

The district has about 60,600 registered Democrats, 40,900 registered Republicans and 40,800 independents.

Democratic Sen. Victoria Steele is running unopposed to keep her seat in the state Senate. She had 76,132 votes, including 71,655 votes through early ballots and 4,477 at polling places.

Legislative District 10

In central Tucson and Tucson’s east side, a newcomer was one of the top two vote-getters in LD 10 as of Wednesday afternoon.

In the race for the district’s two seats in the state House of Representatives, Stephanie Stahl Hamilton, a Democrat, had 54,842 votes. She trailed only Rep. Domingo DeGrazia, also a Democrat, who had 55,013 votes.

Republican Michael Hicks had 40,662 votes and Mabelle Gummere, also a Republican, had 37,134 votes.

DeGrazia received 52,702 votes through early ballots and 2,311 votes at polling places. Hamilton received 52,533 votes through early ballots and 2,309 votes at polling places.

Hicks received 33,617 votes through early ballots and 7,045 votes at polling places. Gummere received 30,897 votes through early ballots and 6,237 votes at polling places.

Democrat Kirsten Engel, who currently represents the district in the state House of Representatives, had 61,669 votes in the race for the district’s seat in the state Senate. Engel received 58,716 votes through early ballots and 2,953 votes at polling places.

Republican Justine Wadsack had 40,800 votes, including 33,263 votes through early ballots and 7,537 at polling places.

The district includes midtown Tucson east of Campbell Avenue between Speedway and 22nd Street, the east side, Foothills area east of Bear Creek, Davis-Monthan neighborhoods and Civano.

LD 10 is home to about 57,200 registered Democrats, 43,100 registered Republicans and 41,300 independents.

Legislative District 3

On Tucson’s west side, three Democratic incumbents ran unopposed for the seats in Legislative District 3.

Sen. Sally Ann Gonzales had 54,505 votes in the race to hold the district’s seat in the state Senate as of Wednesday afternoon. She received 50,233 votes through early ballots and 4,272 votes at polling places.

In the race for the district’s two seats in the state House of Representatives, Rep. Alma Hernandez had 42,918 votes, including 39,859 votes through early ballots and 3,059 votes at polling places.

Rep. Andrés Cano had 42,679 votes, including 39,961 votes through early ballots and 2,718 votes at polling places.

The district covers Tucson’s west and southwest sides including the University of Arizona and downtown, stretching from Ryan Airfield north to Prince Road at about First Avenue.

Contact reporter Curt Prendergast at 573-4224.

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