IRON COUNTY—Nothing changes in Iron County as a result of the election held on Feb. 28: The Health Department still has its millage, and Wayne Wales is still county commissioner in District 1.
County Clerk Joan Luhtanen reports that turnout for the first elec-tion of the year was 23 percent (2,148 of 9,427 registered voters).
The recall effort against Wales was the issue drawing the most in-terest. In the end, 62 percent of voters were against the recall, which would have ended Wales’ term 10 months early—his District 1 seat and all other County Board seats go before voters again this fall.
The recall question got 237 votes in favor and 381 opposed. District 1 includes Iron River Township, Stambaugh Township and the city of Gaastra.
All county voters were asked to approve the millage for the Dickin-son-Iron District Health Department, and the proposal received 65 per-cent support: 1,383 in favor and 754 against. The ballot measure ap-proved 0.42 mills for the Health Department. Of that amount, 0.35 is a renewal, and 0.07 is new.
The Republican presidential race drew a lot of interest, publicity and phone calls to homes. Of all those who cast ballots on Feb. 28, 68 percent (1,467) asked for a Republican ballot. Voters in Michigan do not have to register with a particular party—they can vote for either party.
Statewise, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney received the most votes. But in Iron County, Romney finished second to former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.
Santorum got 710 votes (48 percent of the total), with Romney getting 423 (29 percent), U.S. Rep. Ron Paul was third at 179 (12 percent) and former Rep. Newt Gingrich was fourth at 109 (7 percent). Santorum and Romney were the only candidates who campaigned extensively in Michigan.
Other Republican votes went to Rick Perry (five), Herman Cain (four), Michele Bachman (three) and Jon Huntsman, Gary Johnson, Fred Karger and Buddy Roemer (one each). Also, 28 Republican votes were for an uncommitted delegate, and there were two write-ins.
President Obama was the only name on the Democratic ballot. Of the 349 Democratic votes, 276 went to him, while 61 voted for “un-committed.” There was one Democratic write-in.