HomeNewsAlison Couch wins in upset; roundup of Columbia County results

Alison Couch wins in upset; roundup of Columbia County results



Harlem accountant Alison Couch beat incumbent Dewey Galeas for the district 4 Columbia County Commission seat in the only upset in the county’s elections.

Couch won 2,161 to Galeas’ 1,928. The district covers Harlem, Grovetown and Appling.

“I’m going to get to work. I’m going to look at Exit 183 immediately,” Couch said, referring to the Interstate 20 exit that is under construction and has caused serious traffic problems in Grovetown. “I am going to talk to the other commissioners and start building relationships with them.”

Alison Couch, right, looks at the early results with her assistant Katie Williams. Photo by Joshua B. Good.

Galeas refused to answer questions, texting a reporter “Sorry sir. A family night.”

Galeas is a retired Army officer and anesthetist, and he touted his efforts to get Columbia County to take over the Harlem Water Department as one of his crowning achievements. He acknowledged, in a previous interview, that he had angered Harlem’s elected officials, especially after he successfully worked against Harlem’s efforts to annex residential property and expand the city limits.

Couch expanded her base beyond Harlem, and at the two debates with Galeas, her supporters outnumbered his three to one. And they wore her campaign T-shirts.

Though Couch and Galeas, both Republicans, faced off in a primary, no other candidates from any political party filed for the office. Therefore, Couch is the winner. In fact, no Democrats filed for any partisan offices in Columbia County.

In the county’s other two contested elections, both incumbent school board members won against challengers. The school board election is a non-partisan race.

One of the winning incumbents, Judy Simmons Teasley, said voters rejected the challengers’ focus on banning books and concern over teaching America’s history of racism.

“I think they instilled more fear than anything else, which is regrettable,” Teasley said of the candidates focused on book bans. “It’s only a distraction to what we actually need to be doing.”

Teasley won with 4,271. Ashley Lee got 2,970 votes. Melvin Mahone got 762 votes.

Votes being counted in Columbia County. Photo by Joshua B. Good.

The other winning incumbent, Kristi Baker, said she focused her campaign on the work she does for children and said the book bans and concern for teaching Critical Race Theory really aren’t issues in Columbia County.

Baker won with 4,485 votes. Her closest challenger was John Duggan with 1,902 votes. Sandy Steed got 622 votes and Lee Benedict got 475 votes.

Other vote totals for Columbia County:

County Commission Chairperson Douglas Duncan ran unopposed in the county-wide seat and got 21,463 votes.

County Commissioner Connie Melear ran unopposed in District 1 and got 6,600 votes.

Columbia County District Attorney Bobby Christine ran unopposed and got 21,700 votes.

State House Representative District 123

Rob Leverett – 505

State House Representative District 125

Barry Fleming – 6,515

State House Representative District 127

Mark Newton – 6,032 

State House Representative District 131

Jodi Lott – 8,496

State Senate District 23

Max Burns – 5,794

State Senate District 24

Lee Anderson – 15,703

Columbia County Superior Court

James Blanchard – 28,086

Columbia County Superior Court

J. Wade Padgett – 28,185

Governor Republican primary

Brian Kemp – 17,061

David Perdue – 5,892

Kandis Taylor – 809

Catherine Davis – 183

Tom Williams – 56

Governor Democratic primary

Stacey Abrams – 7,520

Lt. Governor Republican primary

Burt Jones – 12,431

Butch Miller – 5,290

Mac McGregor – 2,879

Jeanne Seaver – 1,732

Lt. Governor Democratic primary

Renitta Shannon – 1,358

Kwanza Hall – 1,254

Erick Allen – 1,087

Charlie Bailey – 928

Tyrone Brooks – 890

Tony Brown – 349

Jason Hayes – 272

Derrick Jackson – 794

R. Malik – 178

Secretary of State Republican primary

Jody Hice – 11,464

Brad Raffensperger – 10,163

T.J. Hudson – 890

David Belle Isle – 952

Secretary of State Democratic primary

Bee Nguyen – 2,353

Dee Dawkins-Haigler – 2,012

John Eaves – 518

Floyd Griffin – 953

Michael Owens – 1,338

Attorney General Republican primary

Chris Carr – 16,699

John Gordon – 6,070

Attorney General Democratic primary

Jennifer Jordan – 5,328

Christian Smith – 1,821

U.S. Senate Republican primary 

Herschel Walker – 19,202

Gary Black – 1,681

Josh Clark – 749

Kelvin King – 624

Jonathan McColum – 838

U.S. Senate Democratic primary

Raphael Warnock – 7,181

Tamara Johnson-Shealey – 344

U.S. House of Representative Republican District 12

Rick W. Allen – 21,945

U.S. House of Representative Democratic District 12

Elizabeth Johnson – 6,926

Georgia Supreme Court

Veronica Brinson – 8,021

Verda Colvin – 20,561

Georgia Supreme Court

Shawn LaGrua – 27,471

Georgia Supreme Court

Carla McMillian – 27,502

Georgia Court of Appeals

Anne Barnes – 27,501

Georgia Court of Appeals

Chris McFadden – 27,476

Georgia Court of Appeals

Trea Pipkin – 27,295

Commissioner of Agriculture Republican

Tyler Harper – 21,115

Commissioner of Agriculture Democrat

Nakita Hemingway – 4,074

Winfred Dukes – 1,883

Fred Swann – 1,063

Commissioner of Insurance Republican

John King – 16,280

Ben Cowart – 2,001

Patrick Witt – 4,086

Commissioner of Insurance Democrat

Janice Robinson – 3,639

Raphael Baker – 2,383

Matthew Wilson – 1,019

State School Superintendent Republican

Richard Woods – 17,464

John Barge – 4,843

State School Superintendent Democrat

Alisha Searcy – 4,057

Currey Hitchens – 943

Jaha Howard – 1,009

James Morrow – 1,082

Commissioner of Labor Republican

Bruce Thompson – 12,630

Mike Coan – 6,255

Kartik Bhatt – 1,507

Commissioner of Labor Democrat

William Bodie – 1,714

Thomas Dean – 671

Nicole Horn – 1,639

Lester Jackson – 1,427

Nadia Surrency – 1,599

Joshua B. Good is a staff reporter covering Columbia County and military/veterans’ issues for The Augusta Press. Reach him at [email protected] 


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