MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Four incumbent in the state House of Delegates were defeated in Tuesday’s primary election in West Virginia, while a few others may eventually end in recounts.
Longtime delegates Mark Hunt (D-Kanawha) and Ron Fragale (D-Harrison) were defeated in crowded district races. Hunt finished fourth in the three-delegate 36th District, while Fragale placed fifth in the Harrison County delegate race where four won nominations into the November general election.
Tuesday also signaled defeat for Wayne County Del. Tim Kinsey, appointed last year by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to replace former House Speaker Rick Thompson who took a position in the Tomblin Administration. Kinsey finished third and out of the running in the Democratic primary.
Two-term Del. Larry Kump (R-Berkeley) lost his re0election bid to 17-year-old Hedgesville High School senior Saira Blair, daughter of Berkeley County Sen. Craig Blair.
In the 24th Delegate District, Logan County’s Ted Tomblin and Rupie Phillips tied for second place, each unofficially with 2,013 votes. The vote canvassing will decide that race followed by a possible recount.
In the every-vote-counts category, Phillipi city clerk Tammy Stemple defeated fellow Democrat Ken Auvil by one vote for the party’s nomination in the 47th Delegate District.
When the Democrat and Republican winners from Tuesday face off Nov. 4, control of the House will be at stake. The Democrats currently hold only a six-seat margin, 53-47.