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Corporation Commission returns close but favoring Republicans

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Republican incumbent Bob Stump and GOP candidates Robert “Bob” Burns and Susan Bitter Smith led a close race for three seats on the Arizona Corporation Commission.

Unofficial returns showed the three ahead of two incumbent Democrats, Sandra Kennedy and Paul Newman, as well as Democrat Marcia Busching.

However, the race remains too close tonight for Cronkite News to project any winners.

It would be Stump’s second term on the five-member commission, which regulates the utility rates and services of gas, water, electricity and phone services, as well as railroad and pipeline safety.

Burns, former Arizona Senate president, is making his first run for commissioner.

Bitter Smith has been the executive director of the Arizona-New Mexico Cable Communications for 32 years. She previously served as the president of the Central Arizona Project, which helps deliver Colorado River water to Central Arizona cities.