“I’m feeling fabulous,” Stutes said. “This community really got out and got behind me, and I’m certainly grateful for the people who came out and voted and supported me.”
However, waiting for results and the last few days leading up to the election was a bit nerve-wracking for her.
“You do everything you can do, and then you get to a point where you say, ‘I’ve given it my all and it’ll turn out how it’s supposed to turn out,’” Stutes said. “The nice thing was, you just have to know the community wasn’t going to lose because they had three capable candidates and that’s what you’ve got to be concerned about is making sure the community doesn’t lose.”
For Jerry McCune, the only Democrat running, the primary wasn’t as stressful.
“No, it wasn’t, but, it is interesting to see where the votes come from and then it’s nice to know who I’m actually going to run against,” McCune said.
Moving forward, McCune’s strategy is getting to know smaller communities in the district and talking about education, fishing and renewable resources. He plans to return to Kodiak in September and October.
“I’m going to tell folks what I’m about and my experience in the last 23 years as a commercial fisherman and let folks decide from there,” McCune said.
Stutes said her strategy looking forward to the general election is the same as it was leading up to the primary.
“To be in touch with the people,” Stutes said. “To let them know I want the job, and I’ll do a good job for them.”
The unofficial results as of Wednesday had Louise Stutes with 802 votes, Richard Walker with 515 and Carol Austerman with 488. McCune received 817.
Walker was upbeat in discussing the election and said he didn’t feel bad about losing.
“It’s not going to deter me,” Walker said. “I’ll still stay on the City Council and see what I can do to help the people in the community.”
He thanked his family and supporters and said he’s planning to try again for a seat in two years.
“I believe in the process, and I actually enjoyed it and getting out and meeting a lot of people,” Walker said. “This was just the first swing. I’m fired up and I learned a lot.”
In a voice mail, Austerman said she wanted to thank her supporters and congratulated Stutes on a “race well run.”
Voters will decide between Stutes and McCune on Nov. 4 during the general election.
Contact Julie Herrmann at email@example.com.