Public invited to meet, question local GOP primary candidates at forum

(L-R) Walt Brooks and Steve Kemp, Washington County Republican candidates for Utah House District 75; Gil Almquist and Dean Cox, Republican candidates for Washington County Commission Seat C. Candidates for each race face off in a primary election June 28, St. George, Utah, April 16, 2016 | Photos by Mori Kessler, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – The public has the opportunity to question the Republican primary candidates for Washington County Commission and House District 75 in a public forum Thursday evening.

The Dixie Republican Forum is hosting a forum featuring the Republican candidates who will face off in the June 28 primary. This forum will be held in the Washington County Commission Chambers at the Washington County Administration Building from 6-8 p.m.

House District 75

The 6-7 p.m. hour will feature businessmen Steve Kemp and Walt Brooks who are vying to the Republican nomination for House District 75.

During the Washington County Republican Convention last month, Kemp took 69 delegate votes to Brooks’ 55 in a second round of voting. Slade Hughes, who was also seeking the nomination, was eliminated in the first round of voting.

Currently there are no other challengers for House District 75.


Learn about positions held by Kemp and Brooks here.


Washington County Commission

From 7-8 p.m., Washington County Administrator Dean Cox and former St. George City Councilman Gil Almquist, who are contending for Washington County Commission Seat C, will be featured. They seek to fill the position being vacated by retiring Commissioner Alan Gardner.

In a second round of voting at the county convention, Almquist and Cox were tied at 224 votes each, making way for the primary. Candidate Jimi Kestin was removed after the first round of voting.

A primary would have occurred regardless since Almquist collected the number of signatures needed to get on the primary ballot.

The alternative path to the ballot is allowed under the “Count My Vote” compromise bill the Utah Legislature passed in 2014.

Almquist’s use of the alternative, in addition of going through the caucus-convention system, was an issue specifically pointed out by Cox during the convention.

The winner of the primary will face independent candidates Josh Warburton and Greg Aldred for the Washington County Commission seat.

Questions from the audience will be encouraged.


Learn more about Gil Almquist here and Dean Cox here


The Dixie Republican Forum is an independent group of Republican activists that meet monthly for educational and political purposes.

Event details

  • When: 6-8 p.m., Thursday, May 19
  • Where: Washington County Administration Building, 197 E. Tabernacle St., St. George
  • For more information: Email dixierepublicanforum@yahoo.com

Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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