Republican candidate Wayne Willingham took the party’s nomination Tuesday for House District 12 representative seat.

Willingham beat fellow Republican Bill Floyd with 54.5 percent of votes in the run-off.

“We’re just going to keep on working hard,” Willingham said. “We’ll just keep getting the message out, and I believe that is all it will take.”

Willingham will go up against Democratic candidate James Fields Jan. 29 in the general election.

Voters hit the polls with a total 1.942 votes. Of those, 1,059 went to Willingham while Floyd received 883 votes.

Local Republican party Chairwoman Joyce West said the party’s light voter turnout was disappointing.

“I’m a little disappointed with the turnout, but I guess one reason is just because these elections are all so close to the holidays,” she said. “But I am pleased with our nominee and we are going to work like crazy to get him into office.”

Floyd was unable to be reached for comment.

Fields, who was present at the Cullman Civic Center when the results were announced, congratulated his opponent but said he is ready to fight for the seat.

“We’re going to get in there and fight,” he said. “It is going to be a good race and an interesting race. It will be tough, but we’re going to win this thing.”

Willingham said he plans to rest over the holidays but push forward with his campaign until the general election.

“I’m just looking forward to it,” he said.

Cullman County Probate Judge Leah Patterson-Lust said Tuesday’s run-off went well and without any major complications at the polls.

“Of course, turnout was low, which is disappointing in a race as important as this,” she said. “But overall, everything went really well.”

Lust said the probate office is already prepared for the general election and for the presidential primary election, which will follow only a week later.

“We’re all set for the next elections,” she said. “We will only have one polling school for both elections and we can go through Christmas without any worries.”

The general election to fill the House District 12 seat is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 29.

Former House District 12 Representative Neal Morrison (D) resigned his legislative post in August to take the position as interim president of Bevill State Community College in Sumiton. Morrison had represented District 12 since 1994.

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