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Voters turn out at Lake County Fairgrounds polling place

With her son Jay Padlo, 2, on her side, Carly Anderson makes her choice at the Lake County Fairgrounds polling place Tuesday afternoon.

CROWN POINT — Lake County's blue wave helped some, but not all local Democrats to victory Tuesday.

Sheriff Oscar Martinez and Lake County 1st District Commissioner Kyle Allen defeated their Republican opponents.

However, Republican County Councilman Dan Dernulc and Christian Jorgensen prevailed over their opponents in the Lake County Council 4th District and 7th District, respectively.

Jorgensen said the surge in voter interest prompted by President Donald Trump and his political opponents cut both ways Tuesday.

"Democrats did a good job motivating their voters, but Republicans did a better job," he said.

Lake County voters washed over the high water mark of some 28 years of midterm Tuesday.

More than 165,000 people, some 47 percent of the county's registered voters, cast ballots this year.

That is well over the average of 103,000 votes cast and a percentage turnout of between 27 percent and 43 percent in the last seven midterm elections dating back to 1990, according to the Indiana Secretary of State's website.

Some 70,928 of those cast straight Democratic Party and 27,712 cast straight Republican ballots.

In contested township races, Center Township Trustee Paul L. Bremer and Eagle Creek Township Trustee Rosemarie Morrow, both Republicans, defeated their opponents.

Republican Kevin Toth defeated Democrat James Hunley for Hanover Township trustee. Republican Cathy J. Lareau defeated Democrat George Baranowski for St. John Township trustee.

In nonpartisan races, voters defeated referendums offered by the town of Highland and the Lake Ridge Schools to raise taxes for public works projects as well as financial support for education in unincorporated Calumet Township.

Lake Criminal Court Judge Salvador Vasquez won retention to a new six-year term.

Anton "Coach Pete" Williams won the 2nd District seat and Diane Smith won the 3rd District seat on the School City of East Chicago board. Kathy Ruesken, Richard C. Leber and Donald McCarter won at-large seats on the Griffith Public Schools board.

Carlotta Blake-King, Deborah White and Manuel Candelaria Jr. won at-large seats on the School City of Hammond board; Victor A. Garcia, Luanne Jurczak and Robert A. "Bob" Kuva won at-large seats on the School Town of Highland board.

Sandra J. Hillan, Donald H. Rogers, Rikki Guthrie and Stuart Schultz won at-large seats on the School City of Hobart board, Sandy Clark Lessentine won a seat on the Lake Central School Corp. board and Ricardo "Richard" Perez Jr. won a seat on the River Forest Community School board.

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Lake County Reporter

Bill has reported in Lake County since 1972 after graduating from Indiana University. He has worked for The Times since 1997, covering the courts and local government during much of his tenure. Born and raised in New Albany, Ind., he is a native Hoosier.