Kitchen now trails by 63 votes in Utah State Senate race

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UPDATE: New voting tallies were released by the Salt Lake County Clerk’s office Thursday which now shows Sen. Derek Kitchen trailing Jen Plumb in the race for Utah State Senate District 9. Kitchen has 4,137 votes to Plumb’s 4,200. Only three east-side precincts are showing as unreported. Plumb has more support in east-side districts than Kitchen.

With just under 92 percent of the votes counted in the Utah State Senate District 9, Utah’s only openly gay representative in the Utah State Capitol has a small lead over his challenger for the Democratic nomination.

Sen. Derek Kitchen has 3,322 votes to Jen Plumb’s 3,208 in unofficial results posted Tuesday night at 11 p.m. That is a 1.74 percent difference.

Approximately 700 more votes are yet to be counted.

Plumb, who lives in Emigration Canyon, appears to be favored by east-side, more affluent voters, while Kitchen’s support is in Central Salt Lake.

In debates, Kitchen argued that representation matters, and that as the only millennial in the Utah State Senate, he represents a larger portion of the district’s young population.

“I know what it’s like to rent in this community. We know what it’s like to breathe bad air. We know what it’s like to have our dignity challenged, our existence ignored,” he said.

Plumb countered that Kitchen has shown little result for his terms in office.

“This district for 10 years has not had many results delivered,” she said.

In other results, Rep. Kera Birkeland, who was able to pass legislation banning transgender girls in school sports, is the apparent Republican nominee for her seat with 61% of the vote.

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