Henry County voters took a stance on ushering a fifth city into its borders as the 2018 midterm elections concluded.
With all precincts reporting by 11:15 p.m., 57 percent of voters said No to incorporating a proposed city of Eagles Landing.
An even greater number, more than 70 percent, voted against de-annexing land from Stockbridge and McDonough to form the new city.
The topic has been hotly debated all year long and included court challenges.
The city of Stockbridge declared victory in a news release.
“Fortunately, the referendum vote failed which would have allowed the formation of a new city in Henry County while taking established property from the great city of Stockbridge,” Mayor Anthony S. Ford said in a statement. “We are extremely excited and grateful.”
The Eagles Landing Educational Research Committee also released a statement.
“We didn’t make it happen but not because we didn’t have the grit, guts or integrity,” it said. “Keep pushing to make the Eagles Landing community better. Don’t give up on making our community the spark of the south side.”
City of McDonough residents also denied annexation for East Lake, Lake Haven and McDonough Center properties by a two to one margin.
In county commission races, District 3 Republican incumbent Gary Barham retained his seat with more than 55 percent of the vote, fending off a challenge from Democrat V. Renae Crutches.
In the battle for District 4, in which incumbent Blake Prince did not run, Republican Pete Peterson fell to Democrat Vivian Thomas.
“Although we did not prevail, I am thankful for the amazing team and for all who supported me throughout this election process,” he posted on his campaign Facebook page. “To everyone who put up yard signs, wore T-shirts, knocked on doors—thank you. I will never forget your support. Let's join together to continue to build a better Henry.”
District 5 Commissioner Bruce Holmes ran unopposed.
In Congressional races, U.S. District 3 Rep. Drew Ferguson, R-Newnan, succeeded against Democratic challenger Chuck Enderlin, who earned about 34 percent of the vote. In Henry County, the results favored Enderlin with a 58 percent margin.
U.S. District 10 Rep. Jody Hice, R-Greensboro, defeated Democratic challenger Tabitha A. Johnson-Green district-wide with nearly 63 percent of the vote, with a greater following in Henry County.
U.S. District 13 Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta, also returns to Congress with 76 percent of the district-wide vote over Republican challenger David Callahan, albeit a smaller following in Henry County.
In Georgia Legislature races, District 17 State Sen. Brian Strickland, R-McDonough, earned about 55 percent of the vote district-wide against Democratic challenger Phyllis Hatcher, with a similar margin in Henry County.
District 90 State Rep. Pam Stephenson, D-Decatur, turned aside a challenge from Republican Takosha Swan with nearly 80 percent of the vote. Stephenson wrapped up the Henry County vote with more than 56 percent.
District 109 State Rep. Dale Rutledge, R-McDonough, took more than 53 percent of the Henry County vote against Democratic challenger Regina Lewis-Ward, with nearly 52 percent district-wide.
District 111 State Rep. Geoff Cauble, R-Locust Grove, fell to Democratic challenger El-Mahdi Holly, who scooped up about 56 percent of the vote both district-wide and in the county.
Other state candidates ran unopposed.
Turnout was at nearly 61 percent in Henry County, with 93,540 ballots cast from a voter pool of 154,376.
About a third of those votes came in on Election Day.
“All the polling locations are reporting huge turnouts,” Tina Lunsford, director of Henry County Elections and Voter Registration, said Nov. 6 about the county’s 37 precincts.
Early voters accounted for 62,963 ballots cast by the end of early voting Nov. 2, she said, or nearly twice as many as in the 2014 midterm election.
Results are unofficial until certified by Nov. 20.