TAHLEQUAH, Oklahoma -- Incumbent Cherokee Nation Chief Chad Smith's running mate has lost in a runoff election to fill the American Indian tribe's deputy chief post.
Official vote totals certified Sunday showed tribal councilman S. Joe Crittenden with 6,478 votes, or 53.2 percent, while Smith's running mate, Chris Soap, received 5,706 votes during Saturday's runoff.
In a four-candidate field during the original June 25 election, Soap had received about 47 percent of the vote, with Crittenden receiving about 36 percent.
With the tribal Supreme Court having ordered a second election for the tribe's principal chief position between Smith and Bill John Baker, and with that election likely to be held after the August 14 end of Smith's current term, Crittenden likely will serve for a time as interim principal chief.
07/22/2011 Related Story: Cherokee Nation's Run-Off Election Is Saturday.
7/21/2011 Related Story: Cherokee Nation Supreme Court Throws Out Chief Election Results.