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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

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Latta edges out Buehrer to take coveted Republican primary

After pulling an all-nighter, State Rep. Bob Latta squeezed out a narrow victory in the Republican primary of the 5th District Congressional special election.

With all precincts reporting, results on the Ohio Secretary of State’s Web site showed Latta beat his nearest rival for the nomination, State Sen. Steve Buehrer, by 3.6 percentage points, or 2,649 votes.

The candidates were kept up well past midnight on election day.

Problems with flood-damaged voting machines in Putnam County delayed reporting of that county’s results until after 6 a.m. the morning after the election.

Latta, who said he only got an hour and a half of sleep on election night, was reluctant to make any statements to the press until formally claiming victory around 6:45 a.m. the morning after.

‘It would have been presumptuous to claim something while some counties were still out,’ Latta said.

But all doubt was removed when Buehrer called Latta to leave him a congratulatory voicemail.

Latta was talking on another line when the senator called.

In a written statement announcing his concession, Buehrer expressed remorse over the negative campaign tactics that marked the bitter primary battle.

‘The tone of the campaign was regrettable because it muted the issues that must continue to be discussed in this region,’ he said.

Latta says he now hopes to focus on the issues as he faces off against Democratic nominee Robin Weirauch in the general special election.

The next election is scheduled for Dec. 11.

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