Voters went to the polls Tuesday in a special election to elect a congressman for the 8th District in southeast Missouri. 

The Republican nominee for the 8th Congressional District coasted to victory Tuesday in Texas County and across the region.

State Rep. Jason Smith of Salem, a Republican, easily beat State Rep. Steve Hodges of East Prairie, a Democrat, 1,648-510, in county balloting.

Other candidates: Bill Slantz, a Libertarian, 45; and Doug Enyart, Constitution Party, 108.

It was a light turnout in Texas County in the special election to name a replacement for Jo Ann Emerson, who stepped down to lead a rural cooperative association earlier this year.

Smith captured 71 percent of the vote in the county.

In the Houston polling precinct, about 14 percent voted. That matched the total turnout in the county. 

Texas County Clerk Don Troutman said 2,316 voted at polling places in the county.

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