Elections

Update: Republicans win in 2 contested state House races to represent Beaufort County

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This story was updated at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Republican candidates prevailed in two contested state House of Representatives races to represent Beaufort County as unofficial results were reported early Wednesday.

As of 6:30 a.m., 100 percent of Beaufort County precincts were reporting.

District 123

Rep. Jeff Bradley (R) — Incumbent Bradley, 61, clenched 61.98 percent (10,758) of the vote.

Bradley has said said the key issues are improvement in the state’s education system, tax policy reform and bridge replacement throughout the state.

Bradley, a married father of three, serves on the Regulations and Administrative Procedures Committee as he completes his second term in office.

Mario Martinez (D) — Challenger Martinez, 43, trailed Bradley with 37.92 percent (6,582) of the vote.

Martinez had said he would focus on education reform for children, improving teacher salaries, affordable health care, health industry job creation and the protection of the coastal environment if elected.

Martinez is a business owner in Bluffton and on Hilton Head Island and a married father of two children.

Martinez was subject to a lawsuit involving the Mexican-American Coalition in 2013 when he was ordered to pay $34,000 to the organization after it accused him of using its funds for personal use. Martinez has not yet paid that amount.

District 120

Rep. Weston Newton (R) — Incumbent Newton, 51, won with 64.40 percent (9,116) of the vote.

He entered the election in his sixth year as a representative for the district. He plans to focus on school safety, improving teacher retention rates and stemming the opioid epidemic.

Newton, a married father of three, is chairman of the House Legislative Oversight Committee, which holds state agencies accountable, he said.

Ryan Martz (D) — Challenger Martz, 35, garnered 35.57 percent (5,035) of the vote.

Martz had said his focus would have been on criminal justice reform and education reform to increase teacher salaries and the number of vocational schools that train students for skilled labor.

Martz is a business owner, husband and father of one.

Other House districts

Republicans Bill Herbkersman in District 118 and Shannon Erickson in District 124, along with Democrats Michael Rivers in District 121 and Shedron Williams in District 122 were unopposed on Tuesday’s ballot.

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