politics

Early returns show promise for GOP pickups in Vermont House

By Guy Page

10:30 pm, Nov. 3 – It’s early yet, but there are signs that the GOP may pick up some seats in the Vermont House. 

Gov. Phil Scott’s 68%-27% lead over David Zuckerman may be helping downticket voting. President Donald Trump is running at 31%, just a percentage point above his 30% finish in 2016. Molly Gray is leading R Scott Milne in the race for lieutenant governor.

Most contested races are in multi-town districts, and not all towns have reported results. None of the results below are listed as official “wins” on the Secretary of State website, and most are lacking returns from one or more towns. These results could turn around quickly. So with that disclaimer, here are some early returns:

Sally Achey (R) leading Prog incumbent
  • Incumbent Cynthia Browning of Arlington leads in two-seat Bennington-4 (all 4 towns reporting). Browning, former Democrat and now Independent, had a falling-out with House Speaker Mitzi Johnson and is likely to vote with the GOP on some issues. 
  • Newcomer R Paul Martin and R Rep. Lisa Hango lead incumbent D Charen Fegard in two-seat Franklin 5. If the lead holds: +1 GOP. 
  • R Joe Parsons leads Kelsey Root-Winchester in Orange-Caledonia, with one of three towns reporting, in district now held by retiring D Chip Conquest. If lead holds: +1 GOP.
  • R Jeannine Young leads D Katherine Sims in Orleans-Caledonia, with only two of seven towns reporting. Incumbent Vicki Strong leading vote-getter. If lead holds: +1 GOP. 
  • R Challenger Sally Achey leads P incumbent Robin Chesnut-Tangerman with 4 of 5 towns reporting. If lead holds: +1 GOP.
  • Conservative R challenger Art Peterson leading all candidates in two seat Rutland 2 House. Incumbent D Dave Potter has 14 vote lead on incumbent R Tom Burditt. If leads hold, status quo; if Burditt can find 15 more votes, +1 GOP.

Probable GOP losses are in Westford and Grand Isle County. Allysa Black (D) leads by 46 votes over incumbent R Bob Bancroft. House Speaker Mitzi Johnson and Andy Julow are leading Republican Leland and Michael Morgan in the Grand Isle-Chittenden district, with five of six towns reporting results. 

Most districts are still unreported. Reported districts other than those listed above are “status quo”. Vermont Daily will report hourly on Vermont election results until the early morning. 

PHOTO: Sally Achey, Republican challenger, leads incumbent Progressive Robin Chesnut-Tangerman by four points, with one town yet to report, in the Rutland-Bennington House district.

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