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Tisdale wins by 45 votes, advances to November

By By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
Aug. 27, 2003
A relieved Samuel Tisdale stood on the steps of the Kemper County Courthouse on Tuesday night and thanked his supporters.
Tisdale, who has served as sheriff of Kemper County since 1998, had just learned he'd won his third election in five years, defeating Johnny Harpole in the Democratic party runoff by a total of 45 votes.
Tisdale will now face independents Rusty Calvert, Ronnie Rankin and Glen Williams in the Nov. 4 general election to remain as sheriff.
The sheriff's race was one of several Democratic and Republican party runoffs on Tuesday in East Central Mississippi and the biggest race in Kemper County.
Other Kemper County runoffs included District 3 supervisor, where Dennis Allen defeated Jerome Hickman, and Post 2 constable, where Michael T. Oliver defeated Melton Davis.
In Clarke County, voters decided three close Democratic runoffs races for chancery clerk, Place 1 constable and Place 2 constable.
Angie Wade Chisholm defeated Beth Graham Fleming in the chancery clerk's race. Chisolm received 1,628 votes, or 52 percent, to Fleming's 1,556 votes, or 48 percent.
James "J.D." Everett edged out Bennie J. Staten for constable, Place 1. Everett received 924 votes, or 52 percent, to Staten's 847, or 48 percent.
Donald Campbell defeated Melton Davis in the Place 2 constable race. Campbell received 714 votes, or 54 percent, to Davis' 525 votes, or 46 percent.
At the Kemper County courthouse Tuesday night, Harpole congratulated Tisdale on his victory. He said he was disappointed to lose by 45 votes.
Harpole said he wasn't sure if he'll endorse a candidate for the Nov. 4 general election.
Tisdale has served as sheriff of Kemper County since 1998 a year after Sheriff Mike McKee was killed in the line of duty.
Tisdale won a special election to become sheriff in 1998. He followed that a year later by winning the Democratic primary to snag the job for a full four-year term that started in January 2000.
He said he now plans to turn his attention to the general election and rounding up additional support, including picking up votes from those who supported Harpole in the primary.