San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

March 3rd, 2010
Ratliff, Boling win sheriff, judgeship primaries

by BRAD ROLLINS

Sheriff Tommy Ratliff and County Court at Law Judge No. 1 Anna Martinez Boling, both appointed to their positions after their predecessors’ deaths in office, held up well against challengers in Tuesday’s Democratic Party primary.

Ratliff, a retired Texas Ranger whom the Commissioners Court appointed in December 2008 following Sheriff Allen Bridges’ unexpected death, bested former deputy Bill Huddleston. Huddleston ran against Bridges unsuccessfully in 2008 as the Democratic Party’s nominee and was considered as his appointed replacement before the court settled on Ratliff.

Ratliff won 2,899 votes (56.3 percent) to Huddleston’s 2,252 (43.7 percent).

“So far so good,” Ratliff said early in the evening at his watch party in San Marcos as he led early and absentee voting and a handful of boxes from the eastern portion of the county. As it happens, he held a lead through out the night and carried 31 of 36 boxes.

Ratliff faces former Travis and Williamson county sheriff’s deputy Gary Cutler, a Driftwood Republican, in November’s general election. Cutler won 6,638 votes running unopposed in his party’s primary. The winner will serve the last two years of what would have been Bridges’ term.

Boling won even more handily against assistant district attorney David Mendoza than did Ratliff against Huddleston. She pulled down 3,280 votes (63.7 percent) against Mendoza’s 1,870 (36.3 percent). Boling won all but two of 36 voting precincts and one of those was a tie.

As early returns showed her comfortably ahead, Boling declined to declare victory, recalling her run for district judge in 2006 when she in the lead for much of the night but ultimately lost by fewer than 500 out 30,000 cast when Republican-leaning western precincts were counted.

Later in the night Mendoza called to offer what Boling said was a gracious concession.

“My opponent gave me a run for my money. He worked very hard and I respect that. He told me he and his supporters would rally around and help me and I’m just very pleased with the result,” Boling said.

In November, she faces San Marcos attorney Robert Updegrove, who won 6,418 votes running unopposed in the Republican Party primary.

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