Tinsley wins Republican 2nd District primary

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Ed Tinsley has won the Republican 2nd Congressional District primary.

With 89 percent of precincts reporting, Tinsley had 31 percent of the vote to 20 percent each for Aubrey Dunn Jr. and Monty Newman, 17 percent for Greg Sowards and 10 percent for C. Earl Greer.

“We’re excited, and it was obviously a close race,” Tinsley said in an interview. “There were a lot of great candidates, and I’m honored.”

Tinsley was speaking from the K-BOB’s restaurant he owns in Ruidoso moments after telling supporters at the restaurant that he won the race.

Meanwhile, the Democratic 2nd District race remains too close to call. Tinsley said he’s ready to face either Democratic candidate — Harry Teague or Bill McCamley — in November.

“We look forward to an invigorated general election,” Tinsley said. “I think they’re both great gentlemen and I think they both stand for their party issues. I just think there will be distinct differences.”

Tinsley praised some of his primary opponents, saying Newman “ran a great race” and Sowards “really exceeded expectations.” Tinsley said he considered Dunn the frontrunner through most of the race, but stayed consistently on Dunn’s heels and remained patient.

And he said he sympathizes with his opponents because he’s been in their shoes. Tinsley lost the Republican 2nd District primary in 2002.

“We’re excited about what’s occurred tonight and I want to reiterate the fantastic people that I’ve run with and against during this campaign,” Tinsley said. “They are champion folks.”

Newman said he was “thankful to be a part of the process.”

“Ed did a good job and ended up with a win tonight,” he said. “We’re very pleased with our performance and what we’ve done in a short time.”

The Dunn campaign had no comment. Sowards and Greer could not immediately be reached for comment.

Update, 1:40 a.m.

Sowards had this to say:

“I called Ed up about 10:30 and congratulated him on the race,” Sowards said. “At the time we were slugging it out in Doña Ana and returns from other counties indicated it was over. I will help in whatever way I can to assure his victory in November. I am at peace with our effort. My family and I did all anyone could have expected of us.”

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