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Crockett, Winder, McAdams move forward for mayoral candidacy


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MURRAY — Salt Lake County Republicans voted that former Salt Lake County Councilman Mark Crockett will face West Valley City Mayor Mike Winder in the June primary, GOP county delegates decided Saturday at their convention.

The pair were the top vote-getters in the first round of balloting, but Crockett fell short in the second round of winning the 60 percent support needed to avoid a primary election.

The final results, announced some three hours after delegates turned in their ballots, was 58 percent for Crockett and 42 percent for Winder.

"Another carton of milk — 2 percent — would have been nice," said Crockett, who narrowly missed winning the nomination outright. "We'll take it as a vote of confidence."

Winder said he was excited for the opportunity to still be in the race. "This gives us a few more months to talk about the issues with the voters," he said, adding a primary will make them both stronger candidates come November.

Said Crockett, "There are some meaningful differences between the two of us."

Eliminated in the first round of voting were Salt Lake County Councilman Richard Snelgrove, former Congressman Merrill Cook, Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott and Larry Decker.

Meanwhile, Salt Lake County Democrats on Saturday nominated Ben McAdams to run for Salt Lake County mayor.

McAdams captured 62 percent of the delegate vote, avoiding a primary against his state Senate colleague Ross Romero, who ended up with 38 percent of delegate support.

Convention Results

Candidate First round Second round
McAdams (D)57.4%62%
Romero (D)42.6%38%
Crockett (R)32% 58%
Winder (R)32% 42%

The two-man race became a bit more dramatic after party leadership started convention day Saturday with a party constitution change to allow a second round of balloting in races with only two candidates, if either candidate captures 57 percent of the vote.

Before today, a candidate had to claim 60 percent of delegates to win the party's nomination or face their challenger in a primary.

McAdams claimed 57.4 percent of the vote in the first round to Romero's 42.6 percent. Delegates piled out of the auditorium at Murray High School to vote in a second round — just as news came the GOP candidates had been narrowed to two with Republicans in a second round of balloting between West Valley Mayor Mike Winder and former County Councilman Mark Crockett.

Delegates going into the second round of voting had a clearer idea what the GOP opposition will be in November as they made their second-round votes.

GOP candidate promises

Crockett told delegates he would put in place a transition plan for the county focusing on core services, including incarceration, mental health and drug treatment.

"To transform is not easy," said Crockett, a management consultant. "This is not 'learn-on-the-job' kind of work. But it is what I do for a living."

Winder, who was nominated by his 12-year-old daughter Jessica as a candidate who is "nice and listens," called himself a limited government conservative.


It would have been easier for me to continue as mayor of West Valley, but I'm concerned about our future.

–- Mike Winder, West Valley City mayor


"It would have been easier for me to continue as mayor of West Valley, but I'm concerned about our future," Winder said, promising to fight for local decision making and economic growth.

He said the improvements to Valley Fair Mall show how his policies work. "We need to grow the tax base, not raise our taxes," he said.

Snelgrove had touted his record since being elected to the Salt Lake County Council in 2010, part of the new GOP majority.

"Good news, taxpayer help has arrived," Snelgrove said, telling the delegates the council "has taken a conservative turn you can be proud of."

He said his name recognition would help Republicans win the mayor's office in November. Outgoing Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon, a Democrat, is not seeking reelection.

Cook, a frequent candidate for a number of offices, warned that the county is "in grave danger. We are in danger of being taxed to death."

He said he would stop what he called outrageous spending, describing the county's proposed participation in a convention hotel as "socialism, pure and simple."

Other Democratic candidate results

County Council District 4 candidate Sam Granato defeated challenger Deb Henry on the second round ballot, squeaking past the 60 percent needed to win the nomination by less than 1 percent. But the second round didn't prevent a primary in Utah Senate District 8, where Ty McCartney and Josie Valdez will face off in June. Valdez was only one vote ahead of McCartney after the second round, so neither was close to claiming the party nomination outright.

Advancing to a primary directly are Rep. Neal Hendrickson, D-West Valley, and challenger Liz Muniz in District 36 with a 54-46 percent split favoring Muniz.


This is the biggest convention the Salt Lake County Democrats have had.

–- Kenny Wilks, convention chairman


Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck, D-Salt Lake, was nominated outright over challenger Richard Goldberger in House District 24 with Chavez-Houck claiming 95 percent of delegates' votes.

Rep. Brian Doughty, D-Salt Lake, on the other hand, lost to challenger Angela Romero for House District 26 by a margin of 72-28 percent.

The party's Saturday convention was beyond capacity at Murray High with 2,360 attending. "This is the biggest convention the Salt Lake County Democrats have had," said Kenny Wilks, the convention chairman.

Delegates voted on paper ballots this year, prompting concern the day would drag on with the record turnout. Wilks said the decision was whether to vote on paper or risk problems with electronic voting machines the county party had at the previous convention. "Last time we ended up with problems and ended up voting on paper anyway."

Wilks said, adding that ballot-counting time is still going faster this year than it did at the most recent convention, even though that event had half as many people attending.

Contributing: Dennis Romboy

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