Update - Unger holds off Mays in W.Va. Senate race

November 08, 2006|by MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - State Sen. John Unger on Tuesday night easily won a third term in the West Virginia Legislature, fending off what observers had predicted would be a stiff challenge from Berkeley County Republican Party leader Jerry Mays, according to unofficial results.

With all 59 precincts of the 16th Senatorial District tabulated in Berkeley County, Unger, 37, received 11,081 votes or 63.1 percent. With all of Jefferson County's 30 precincts counted, Unger received 8,260 votes.

Mays, 64, received 6,467 votes in Berkeley County or 36.8 percent. In Jefferson County, Mays received 4,090 votes.

Unger's win, means he would become the third-longest serving state senator to be elected from Berkeley County, assuming he completes the term. State Senators are paid $15,000 per year.

A federal government retiree, Mays, of 211 Sudley Lane, Martinsburg, had campaigned that he was the candidate who was "most representative" of the district's voters.


A homeland security adviser for the U.S. Department of Energy, Unger of 1022 Williamsport Pike, Martinsburg, credited the community for his own success.

"We really have an opportunity for the next four years to build a better, brighter tomorrow for our residents here," Unger said before the election.

Unger touted his efforts to get W.Va. 9 widened, a new Division of Motor Vehicles office for Jefferson County and locality pay for at least some local state workers.

"We've been making progress in the last three years," Unger had said. "When I first went to Charleston eight years ago, we couldn't get anything passed out of the Senate."

West Virginia State Senate 16th District

Berkeley Co. Jefferson Co. Total

Jerry Mays (R) 6,467 4,090 10,557

John Unger (D)11,081 8,260 19,341

With 59 of 59 precincts reporting in Berkeley Co.

With 30 of 30 precincts reporting in Jefferson Co.

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