Republican Al Melvin on Tuesday defeated Pete Hershberger, the former GOP state house member, in the race for the open seat in State Senate District 26, according to unofficial primary election tallies.

Melvin edged Hershberger by nearly 1,000 votes, aided by his strong showing in Pinal County. (Melvin resides in SaddleBrooke). Melvin received 8,555 votes (53 percent) compared to Hershberger's 7,646 votes (47 percent).

The winner of the Senate District 26 GOP primary will face Democrat Cheryl Cage on Nov. 4.

The following includes tallies only for contested races in the area.

The vote was much closer in the GOP House District 26 race, according to unofficial results.

Vic Williams leads all vote-getters on the GOP side with 9,181 votes (36 percent). Trent Humphries and Marilyn Zerull remain in a virtual dead heat, with Humphries receiving 8,091 votes (32 percent) and Zerull getting 7,960 (31.5 percent). Once final tallies are complete, the top two vote getters will go on to face Democrats Nancy Young Wright, the incumbent, and Don Jorgenson on Nov. 4.

Of the four Nov. 4 candidates for House District 26, voters will choose two to serve in the Legislature.

Incumbent County Supervisors Ann Day (R-District 1) and Sharon Bronson (D-District 3) easily fended off primary challenges on Tuesday.

Day received 8,203 votes (52 percent) compared to the 7,465 (48 percent) cast for businessman Joe Higgins. Day's district includes Oro Valley and Catalina.

Day will run unopposed Nov. 4.

Bronson received 5,452 votes (59 percent) compared to Donna Branch-Gilby's 3,661 votes (40 percent). Bronson, whose district includes Marana, will face Republican Barney Brenner on Nov. 4.

For the latest results, go online to And, see next week's edition of The Explorer for more coverage of the state and local races of most interest to the Northwest.

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