Live coverage of the San Juan County and Navajo Nation elections on Nov. 8

The Daily Times Staff
Farmington Daily Times

Welcome to the Farmington Daily Times' online election blog. Polls closed in San Juan County at 7 p.m.

9:50 a.m.: Among the few contested races for those seeking elected office in San Juan County during this election cycle, the results largely favored Republican candidates, according to unofficial figures.

In the race for the District 2 seat in the state House of Representatives, Republican Mark Duncan easily defeated his independent opponent, Matt Dodson. With more than 7,700 votes having been counted, Duncan won by a margin of 70% to 30% — more than 3,000 votes.

In the San Juan County assessor race, Republican Jimmy Voita (65%) defeated Democrat Henry Silentman (35%) with nearly 39,000 votes having been counted.

In the District II San Juan County Commission race, the GOP’s Gary McDaniel racked up 64% of the more than 7,200 votes that had been counted compared to 36% for his Democratic opponent, Zac George.

There were two contested races for San Juan County magistrate judge. In Division 1, Republican Russell Bradford won 80% of the more than 8,100 votes that had been counted, while his opponent, Democrat Songtree Pioche, received only 20%.

In the Division 2 race, Democrat Stanley King defeated Republican Rena Scott with 53 percent of the 5,900 votes cast. Scott earned 47% of the votes.

9:45 a.m.: A $7 million bond issue that will provide funding for four projects at San Juan College, including a mountain biking park and a new physical plant, rolled to a comfortable victory Tuesday, according to unofficial results.

With more than 35,000 votes counted, the yes side earned 59% of the vote, compared to 41% for the no side. That equated to a margin of more than 6,000 votes.

“I’m very pleased,” the college’s vice president for administrative services, Ed DesPlas, said late Tuesday about the partial results. “I am incredibly pleased by the show of support that San Juan County citizens, voters have shown for the college.”

The bond issue will provide $500,000 for improvements to a mountain biking park on 133 acres of land the college owns at the northwest corner of East 30th Street and College Avenue. It also will provide money for the relocation and construction of the college’s aging physical plant, which carries the biggest price tag of the four projects included in the bond issue at $5.5 million. The existing plant dates to 1978, and college officials have said it would cost more to repair it than build a new one.

The bond issue also includes $500,000 for infrastructure improvements at the Henderson Fine Arts Center Performance Hall and the Connie Gotsch Theatre, and $400,000 for the installation of retractable bleachers at the college’s Health and Human Performance Center.

DesPlas said he expects to see work on the projects begin in the summer of 2023, though the design work for the bike park and physical plant are expected to take a bit longer.

9:25 a.m.: Navajo Nation Election Administration reports that Buu Nygren defeated Jonathan Nez in the presidential race, with Nygren receiving 34,568 votes. Nez received 31,069 votes. All 110 polling places have checked in with tallies, though the results do not become official until certified by the Navajo Board of Election Supervisors.

12:30 a.m.: Be sure and check this blog again Wednesday morning, as The Daily Times will update the remaining San Juan County races once the results are posted. A reminder, all results are unofficial.

12:06 a.m.: A $7 million bond issue that would provide funding for four projects at San Juan College, including a mountain biking park and a new physical plant, appeared headed toward a comfortable victory as the clock struck midnight Tuesday.

With more than 35,000 votes counted, the yes side had earned 59% of the vote, compared to 41% for the no side. That equated to a lead of more than 6,000 votes as Election Day ended, though some votes remained to be counted.

“I’m very pleased,” the college’s vice president for administrative services, Ed DesPlas, said late Tuesday about the partial results, though he understood the tally was not final. “I am incredibly pleased by the show of support that San Juan County citizens, voters have shown for the college.”

If approved, the bond issue would provide $500,000 for improvements to a mountain biking park on 133 acres of land the college owns at the northwest corner of East 30th Street and College Avenue. It also would provide money for the relocation and construction of the college’s aging physical plant, which carries the biggest price tag of the four projects included in the bond issue at $5.5 million. The existing plant dates to 1978, and college officials have said it would cost more to repair it than build a new one.

The bond issue also includes $500,000 for infrastructure improvements at the Henderson Fine Arts Center Performance Hall and the Connie Gotsch Theatre, and $400,000 for the installation of retractable bleachers at the college’s Health and Human Performance Center.

DesPlas said if the bond issue was approved, he expects to see work on the projects begin in the summer of 2023, though the design work for the bike park and physical plant are expected to take a bit longer.

10:45 p.m.: The Navajo Nation race for President appears to have been captured by Buu Nygren.

With 100 of 110 precincts reporting, Nygren and Vice Presidential candidate Richelle Montoya, have a significant edge over Jonathan Nez.

Nygren, with 31,888 votes, remains more than 4,200 votes ahead of Nez, with 27,680.

The results do not become official until certified by the Navajo Board of Election Supervisors.

10:28 p.m.: Buu Nygren continues to hold a substantial lead in his bid to become the new President of the Navajo Nation.

With 90 of 110 polling places reporting, Nygren, along with vice presidential candidate Richelle Montoya, have secured 29,347 votes. Incumbent Jonathan Nez and VP Chad Abeyta have 25,380 votes.

The results do not become official until certified by the Navajo Board of Election Supervisors.

10:06 p.m.: Among the few contested races for those seeking elected office in San Juan County during this election cycle, the results continued to largely favor Republican candidates as the clock hit 10 p.m.

In the race for the District 2 seat in the state House of Representatives, Republican Mark Duncan appeared to be well on his way to victory over his independent opponent, Matt Dodson. With more than 7,700 votes having been counted, Duncan had a lead of 70% to 30% — more than 3,000 votes.

In the San Juan County assessor race, Republican Jimmy Voita (66%) led Democrat Henry Silentman (34%) with more than 38,000 votes having been counted.

In the District II San Juan County Commission race, the GOP’s Gary McDaniel had racked up 65% of the nearly 7,000 votes that had been counted compared to 35% for his Democratic opponent, Zac George.

There were two contested races for San Juan County magistrate judge. In Division 1, Republican Russell Bradford had won 80% of the more than 8,100 votes that had been counted, while his opponent, Democrat Songtree Pioche, had received only 20%.

In the Division 2 race, Democrat Stanley King and Republican Rena Scott had been running neck and neck earlier in the evening with only 10 votes separating them out of more than 3,500 that had been counted. But King began to pull away, surging to a lead of 53% to 47% at 10 p.m., a margin of nearly 3,500 votes.

10:05 p.m.: Buu Nygren has extended his lead in the race for Navajo Nation president.

With 73 of 110 polling places having checked in, Nygren leads incumbent Jonathan Nez by a 55 to 45 percent margin, with 25,110 votes for Nygren as compared to Nez's 20,789.

Official results will not be declared for as much as 10 days after the election, to complete certification.

9:44 p.m.: A bond issue that would provide $7 million for San Juan College to complete a variety of projects, including a mountain biking park and a new physical plant, continued to see strong support Tuesday night as election results were reported.

With more than 33,000 votes counted, the yes side had earned 58% of the vote, compared to 42% for the no side. That equated to a lead of more than 5,000 votes at 9:40 p.m.

9:29 p.m.: Navajo Nation presidential race... With 50 of 110 polling places reporting, Buu Nygren and Richelle Montoya have the lead with 18,574 (55 percent) over Jonathan Nez and Chad Abeyta with 15,310 (45 percent).

The only region which has yet to check in with results is the Eastern Agency, consisting of nearly 30,000 registered voters. Meantime, more than 30 percent of all voters from the agencies of Chinle, Fort Defiance as well as the Northern and Western Agencies have all reported vote tallies.

9:10 p.m.: There was only a handful of contested races among those seeking elected office in San Juan County during this election cycle, and early results Tuesday night largely favored the Republican candidates who were running.

In the race for the District 2 seat in the state House of Representatives, Republican Mark Duncan had a large early lead on his independent opponent, Matt Dodson. With more than 7,200 votes having been counted at 9 p.m., Duncan had a lead of 71% to 29% -- more than 3,000 votes.

In the San Juan County Assessor race, Republican Jimmy Voita (70%) led Democrat Henry Silentman (30%) with more than 33,000 votes having been counted.

In the District II San Juan County Commission race, the GOP’s Gary McDaniel had racked up 73% of the more than 5,300 votes that had been counted compared to 27% for his Democratic opponent, Zac George.

There were two contested races for San Juan County magistrate judge. In Division 1, Republican Russell Bradford had won 80% of the more than 8,100 votes that had been counted, while his opponent, Democrat Songtree Pioche, had received only 20%.

In the Division 2 race, Democrat Stanley King and Republican Rena Scott were running neck and neck with only 10 votes separating them out of more than 3,500 that had been counted, although King held a narrow lead.

9:10 p.m.: With nearly 40 percent of polling places reporting, the Navajo Nation president race is widening, with Buu Nygren leading Jonathan Nez by more than 3,000 votes.

43 of 110 precincts have checked in, with Nygren leading Nez 15,463 to 12,393 (54 percent to 46 percent).

8:43 p.m.: A bond issue that would provide $7 million for San Juan College to complete a variety of projects, including a mountain biking park and a new physical plant, was seeing strong support Tuesday night as early election results were reported.

With nearly 27,000 votes cast, the yes side was carrying 56% of the vote, compared to 44% for the no side. That equated to a lead of more than 3,000 votes at 8:40 p.m.

If approved, the bond issue would provide $500,000 for improvements to a mountain biking park on 133 acres of land the college owns at the northwest corner of East 30th Street and College Avenue. It also would provide money for the relocation and construction of the college’s aging physical plant, which carries the biggest price tag of the four projects included in the bond issue at $5.5 million. The existing plant dates to 1978, and college officials have said it would cost more to repair it than build a new one.

The bond issue also includes $500,000 for infrastructure improvements at the Henderson Fine Arts Center Performance Hall and the Connie Gotsch Theatre, and $400,000 for the installation of retractable bleachers at the college’s Health and Human Performance Center.

8:40 p.m.: Early returns on the 2022 Navajo Nation presidential election were encouraging for the Nygren campaign. Nygren and VP candidate Richelle Montoya held an unofficial advantage of nearly 1,900 votes with a bit more than 20 percent of the total votes tallied.

"It's an incredible feeling, but there's still a long way to go," said Debbie Nez-Manuel, who serves as Nygren's campaign manager.

With 24 of 110 polling places reporting, Nygren/Montoya led Nez/Abeyta by an unofficial tally of 9108 to 7296.

8:33 p.m.: While Mark Ronchetti may be trailing statewide, here's how he's doing among San Juan County voters.

San Juan County

69.19% Est. Vote Counted

*Incumbent

CandidateTotal Votes% Votes
Mark Ronchetti (R)21,06670.3%
Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) *7,82426.1%
Karen Bedonie (LB)1,0933.6%

8:10 p.m.: Republican candidates are carrying the vote, as expected, in San Juan County. Statewide, major population centers are still weighing in. With almost 43% of the vote counted, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham leads Mark Ronchetti 57.2% to 41 percent. For updated statewide stats, go to https://www.daily-times.com/elections/results/2022-11-08/state/new-mexico/?cid=facebook_The_Daily_Times&fbclid=IwAR0Tqm-pOC7VogI4y1hsSyDLnQcqeR6NBFpL_mwTWr9lbOPuKCD0VJsKPak

8 p.m.: With 10 of 110 polling places reporting, Navajo Nation president Jonathan Nez leads Buu Nygren by an unofficial count of 2631 to 2466. Polls closed at 7 p.m.

A group of voters enter and exit the Nenahnezad Chapter House around 2 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022.

3 p.m.: San Juan County voters flocked to polling places. Parking lots were busy at the Farmington Museum, where the voting line at times snaked just about to the front door. The Farmington Public Library's lots were also jammed in the late afternoon as a voter line extended outside for a bit.

People were lined up shortly after 2:30 p.m. on Nov. 8 to vote at the Farmington Museum.