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Alcohol measures approved

Gingrich carries county

POSTED: March 6, 2012 10:16 p.m.

Voters in Dawson County approved two separate measures Tuesday involving alcohol sales on Sundays.

The first allows for package sales at stores, while the second allows restaurants and bars to sell liquor by the drink.

And the county's Republican presidential preference fell in line with the rest of the state, as Newt Gingrich tallied 53 percent of the vote.

Sunday drink sales passed by 2,690 votes, or about 64 percent, to 1,508 votes, or about 36 percent, while package sales passed by a similar margin - 2,644 votes, or about 63 percent, to 1,566 votes, or about 37 percent.

Dawson County Commission Chair Mike Berg said passage of the two measures could be a boost for local businesses and restaurants.

"The public decides if they want to have this and they decided they do," he said. "It would be a shame if the other counties around us were able to do this and our county wasn't."

Dawsonville voters approved Sunday sales in November.

Gingrich led the field on the Republican ballot Tuesday with 2,179 of the 4,195 votes.

He was followed by Mitt Romney with 1,023 votes, or 24 percent, and Rick Santorum at 660 votes, or about 16 percent. Ron Paul got 228 votes.

Dawson County Republican Party Chairman Clint Bearden said the turnout was a "definite sign that the citizens of Dawson County want one of these four men to replace our current president this November."

President Barack Obama, the lone candidate on the Democrats' presidential ballot, received 84 votes countywide.

"I think what we we've seen tonight simply reconfirms that Dawson County is one of the most conservative, Republican counties in the state," Bearden said.

Of the county's 12,625 registered voters, about 34 percent, or 4,249, participated in the election.

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