Republican candidates lead in District 2, 3 Riley County Commission races

With all precincts reporting, Republican candidates John Matta and Greg McKinley led in the polls for their respective County Commission seats. (Dylan Connell | Collegian Media Group) Photo credit: Dylan Connell

When Riley County published its unofficial results on election night, Republican candidates led in the races for Riley County Commission seats in District 2 and 3.

Republican Greg McKinley leads the District 2 seat over Democrat Fanny Fang with 56 percent of the vote.

In District 3, Republican John Matta earned just over 50 percent of the vote to lead the race for the seat over Democrat Kathryn Focke. According to the results, Matta, adjunct professor in the College of Business at Kansas State, led Focke by 10 votes.

He’s not ready to call it a victory yet.

“At this point, I’d say it’s a coin toss,” Matta said.

Focke was not available for comment after the results.

With Democratic candidates leading in several early local election polls, Matta said it was exciting to see a Republican comeback.

“We’ll just have to see how it comes out,” Matta said. “I wish Kathryn well, and we’ll see what happens.”

McKinley said he’s confident his lead in the District 2 race will hold up in the coming days as mail-in and provisional votes are counted. The Riley city councilman, who spent his night watching the results at home with his wife, said he’s grateful he won’t have to wait out the results any longer.

“I’ve been nervous enough,” McKinley said. “To have to wait for another week would be tough.”

McKinley said above all, he’s ready to get to work.

“I’m going to do my best to represent the county,” McKinley said. “All the voters, not just my voters.”

No one from the Fang campaign was available for comment on Election Day, but Fang posted a letter of thanks for her supporters on her campaign Facebook page.

“November 3rd will determine which side of the table I am on. However, the purpose will remain the same: to prioritize people over politics, to be human first, to build a better Riley County for all, together. I love you, Riley County. Our Future is Here,” Fang wrote in the post.

Official results from Riley County will be available on Nov. 16.