Joe McNamara won Saturday’s firehouse primary in Roanoke County’s Windsor Hills district, but the race in the Hollins district ended in a tie. McNamara defeated RoxAnne Christley by just five votes, 292 to 287. In Hollins the race was a dead heat, with Mike Bailey and Al Bedrosian each getting 389 votes. County Republican Committee Chairman Dave Suetterlein says the winner will be selected by a public drawing next week, with a location and time to be set by the party’s executive committee.
McNamara’s victory in Windsor Hills sets up a rematch with Ed Elswick, who defeated McNamara for the Republican nomination four years ago. Elswick is running in November as independent. The eventual nominee in the Hollins district will face independent Gary Jarrell, who announced his candidacy in February.
The outcome in Hollins was the first time political observers can remember a tie in a firehouse primary, but it was not the first tie in a contest for Roanoke County Board of Supervisors. In November of 1977, a tie in the Windsor Hills District resulted in a contest decided by lot. Democrat Lawrence Terry was eventually declared the winner over Republican Joseph Yosafat.