Navajo candidates to vie for 24-delegate Council

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. - Unofficial results from the 2010 Navajo Nation Primary Election held last Tuesday indicates that 48 Council delegate candidates - 34 incumbents and 14 political newcomers - have advanced to the 2010 Navajo Nation General Election on Nov. 2 for a seat in the 22nd Navajo Nation Council.

On May 28, the Navajo Nation Supreme Court ruled that the 22nd Navajo Nation Council will consist of 24 Council members, not 88 Council members.

Edison Wauneka, executive director for the Navajo Election Administration, said the 2010 Navajo Nation Primary Election had a good voter turnout rate. "Usually, the turnout for primaries is around 30 percent but for this primary the rate of voter participation was at 43 percent," he said, adding that 48,511 out of 110,645 registered voters had cast votes.

"For this election, the Navajo voters favored candidates who exhibited quality leadership and capability," he added.

Council Speaker Lawrence T. Morgan agreed, stating, "I appreciate the people for voting in the incumbent candidates. The general election will be unique because both presidential candidates, Lynda Lovejoy and [current] Vice President Ben Shelly are from the eastern portion of the Navajo Nation."

The reduction from an 88 member Council to a 24 member Council will feature several incumbents facing off against one another in 11 voting precincts and several other incumbents facing off against political newcomers in 12 precincts. Only one precinct involves two political newcomers facing off against each other.

In 11 voting precincts, 22 Council incumbents will face off for 11 seats guaranteeing that the new 24 member Council will see 11 incumbents return. Below is a breakdown of the incumbent races by chapter precincts, which features the top two-vote getters facing off against each other in the general election:

• Mexican Water, Tółikan, Teecnospos, Aneth and Red Mesa Precinct: Kenneth Maryboy and Davis Filfred (incumbents)

• Littlewater, Pueblo Pintado, Torreon, Whitehorse Lake, Baca/Prewitt, Casamero Lake, Ojo Encino and Counselor Precinct: Leonard Tsosie and Hoskie Kee (incumbents)

• Ramah, Tohajilee and Alamo Precinct: Lawrence R. Platero and George Apachito (incumbents)

• Tsah Bii Kin, Navajo Mountain, Shonto and Oljato Precinct: Jonathan Nez and Herman Daniels, Jr. (incumbents)

• Becenti, Lake Valley, Nahodishgish, Tse'ii'ahi, Whiterock, Huerfano, Nageezi and Crownpoint Precinct: Danny Simpson and Harry Hubbard (incumbents)

• Churchrock, Iyanbito, Mariano Lake, Pinedale, Smith Lake and Thoreau Precinct: Edmund E. Yazzie and Young Jeff Tom (incumbents)

• T'iistoh Sikaad, Nenahnezad, Upper Fruitland, Tsé daa' Kaan, Newcomb and San Juan Precinct: Lorenzo C. Bates and George Arthur (incumbents).

• Coyote Canyon, Mexican Springs, Naschitti, Tohatchi, and Bahastl'ah Precinct: Mel R. Begay and Norman John (incumbents)

• Bááháálí, Chichiltah, Manuelito, Red Rock, Rock Springs and Tsayatoh Precinct: Harriet K. Becenti and Charles Damon (incumbents)

• Lukachukai, Round Rock, Tsaile/Wheatfields, Tsé chi'zhi and Rock Point Precinct : Nelson S. Begaye and Leonard Teller (incumbents)

• Dilcon, Indian Wells, Teesto, Whitecone and Greasewood Springs Precinct: Elmer P. Begay and Lee Jack, Sr. (incumbents)

In 12 voting precincts, 12 incumbents and 12 new candidates will face off against each other for 12 seats in the new 24 member Council. These 12 districts could potentially consist of only 12 incumbents, only 12 newcomers or a mixture of old and new members. Here is the breakdown of the two top vote getters of the precincts involving incumbents facing off with newcomers:

• Toadlena/Two Grey Hills, Red Valley, Tsé Ałnáozt'ií, Sheep Springs, Beclabito, Gadii'áhi/ Tókoi and Cove Precinct: David L. Tom (incumbent) and Irvin Tyler

• Shiprock Precinct: Pete Ken Atcitty (incumbent) and Russell Begaye

• Tuba City Precinct: Hope MacDonald LoneTree (incumbent) and Joshua Lavar Butler

• Coppermine, K'ai'bii'tó, LeChee, Tonalea/Red Lake and Bodaway/Gap Precinct: Evelyn J. Acothley (incumbent) and Duane S. Tsinigine

• Chilchinbeto, Dennehotso and Kayenta Precinct: Stanley S. Clitso and Katherine Benally (incumbent)

• Chinle Precinct: Leonard H. Pete and Harry Claw (incumbent)

• Oak Springs and St. Michaels Precinct: Jonathan L. Hale and Curran Hannon (incumbent)

• Tachee/Blue Gap, Many Farms, Nazlini, Tselani/Cottonwood and Low Mountain Precinct: Johnny Naize (incumbent) and Roland Tso

• Hard Rock, Forest Lake, Pinion, Black Mesa and Whipporwill Precinct: Dwight Witherspoon and Lorenzo Bedonie (incumbent)

• Klagetoh, Wide Ruins, Houck, Lupton and Nahata Dzil Precinct: Lorenzo Curley (incumbent) and LaVerne Joe

• Crystal, Fort Defiance, Red Lake and Sawmill Precinct: Genevieve Jackson and Roscoe D. Smith (incumbent)

• Cameron, Coalmine Canyon, Birdsprings, Leupp, and Tolani Lake Precinct: Leonard Chee (incumbent) and Walter Phelps

The only voting precinct consisting of two political newcomers is the district of Jeddito, Cornfields, Ganado, Kinlichee and Steamboat:

• Alton Joe Shepherd and Milton Bluehouse, Sr.

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