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Keller called winner in 86th District

April 28, 2004|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - With most returns in two counties counted in Tuesday's Republican primary, The Associated Press declared Mark Keller the winner over Sharon Cole in the 86th District race for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

Keller, 51, was ahead of Cole 971 to 828 with all of the 75 precincts reporting in Franklin County. Keller also was leading in Perry County with 30 of 33 polling places reporting results at press time.

The 86th District, long and rural, covers all of Perry County plus the western length of Franklin County running north of and including part of Peters Township and all of St. Thomas, Fannett and Metal townships and part of Hamilton Township.

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About one-fourth of the district's registered Republican voters are in Franklin County.

Keller and Cole live in Perry County.

No Democrat filed for the seat being vacated by C. Allan Egolf of Landisburg, Pa., a Republican who has held the seat since he was elected to the House in 1992. Egolf announced this year that he is retiring to spend more time with his family.

Keller, 50, said of his lead Tuesday night: "I believe in all of the people who worked for this campaign. They kept a positive campaign all the way through."

Cole, 51, said late Tuesday that she was not ready to concede the election. She said the last three polling places that had not reported final results were her three strongest precincts.

Keller is serving his third six-year term as a Perry County Commissioner, a job he will have to give up to take a seat in the House.

He said in a campaign interview that roads in the district, especially in Perry County, are in need of repair.

State representatives in Pennsylvania earn $64,000 a year.

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