Republicans issue certified caucus results |

Republicans issue certified caucus results

by Kurt Hildebrand

Republicans certified their caucus results early Monday morning after more than a day of counting.

As expected, frontrunner Mitt Romney walked away with half the state’s vote. Challenger Newt Gingrich pulled in 21.1 percent of the vote followed closely by Ron Paul with 18.7 percent. Rick Santorum brought up the rear with 9.9 percent of the vote.

Turnout was light in the Saturday caucuses, with 32,894 ballots cast statewide out of 400,310 active Republican voters in the state, or 8.2 percent.

Douglas County Republicans followed much of the rest of the state in betting on the lead horse in the race to find a challenger to take on President Obama.

Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney took the county caucus with 835 votes, or 41.3 percent of those cast. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich came in second with 600 votes, or 29.7 percent of the vote.

The race for third place, saw Rick Santorum take Douglas over dark horse candidate Ron Paul. Santorum received 318 votes to Paul’s 270.

In all 2,023 Douglas County residents cast ballots on Saturday, slightly more than half the number expected to participate. The turnout represented 14 percent of the county’s 13,990 active registered Republicans.

Party officials confirmed attendance was light. Chairwoman Maggie Benz said the party was anticipating up to 4,000 participants in Saturday’s caucus and precinct meetings.

About a fifth of Carson City’s Republicans participated in the caucus, with 1,738 casting ballots. Carson has 10,493 registered Republicans, according to the Nevada Secretary of State’s Web site.

Lyon County saw a lighter turnout than either Carson or Douglas with 1,375 of the county’s 12,974 Republicans casting a ballot.

Only 7 percent of Washoe County’s 85,514 Republicans turned out to participate on Saturday.

A petition to the state party to seek support for a primary election was signed by residents across Douglas County. The effort showed the dissatisfaction the rank and file have with the caucus process.