MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

July 27, 2013

Cherokee runoff election today

Cherokee voters will determine today who will fill the remaining Cherokee Nation Tribal Council seat.

Incumbent Don Garvin and candidate Mike Dobbins face off for the District 4 seat, which was left undecided June 22 when neither man gained 50 percent plus one vote.

Voting begins at 7 a.m. today and closes at 7 p.m.

Three precincts are open for voting: Warner, Muskogee and Fort Gibson.

Garvin, who has served on the tribal council, received 304 votes, or 43.80 percent in the June election.

He said Friday he hopes to see a better voter turnout today.

“It’s been a long, tough battle, but if we get a good turnout, I think we will win,” Garvin said. “Take somebody with you to vote, a friend, a relative. Take someone and go vote.”

Dobbins received 240 votes, or 34.58 percent of the vote in June’s election.

He said he remains dedicated to improving health care services for Cherokees. And he also hopes to see more voters cast ballots today.

“The primary results signaled the people are ready for a change, so I’ll just encourage our voters to get out and vote,” Dobbins said.

The third candidate in June, Justin Carlton, received 150 votes, or 21.51 percent.

Garvin is a member of the Trail of Tears Association, National Rifle Association, Five Civilized Tribes Association, National Congress of Indians and seven more organizations, he said.

Garvin said the biggest priority he’s identified for the Cherokee Nation is health care.

Since his election to the tribal council, Garvin helped secure the construction of the Three Rivers Health Center in Muskogee and the Dialysis Center in Sallisaw, he said.

Dobbins said he has 32 years of health care experience and he, too, said health care is a top priority for the Cherokee people.

Dobbins said he hopes to be a “personable councilman and a servant to the Cherokee people.”

The Cherokee Nation Election Commission will release unofficial results online at www.cherokee.org after the election.

Reach Wendy Burton at (918) 684-2926 or wburton@muskogeephoenix.com.

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