Engen, Elder leading in mayoral race, Savage, VanFossen in Ward 1

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Missoula County election officials ready ballots from the city primary to be counted on Tuesday.

TOM BAUER, Missoulian Jordan Hansen

Incumbent Missoula mayor John Engen and challenger Jacob Elder were leading in the 2021 municipal primary after initial results were posted Tuesday night.

Jennifer Savage and Jane VanFossen were leading in the Ward 1 city council primary.

Two candidates in each race advance to the general election. Election results are not final until canvassed. 

A fully mail-in election, early results were posted on Missoula County’s website shortly after collection centers closed their doors at 8 p.m.

Bradley Seaman, Missoula County’s elections administrator, said slightly under 75% of the vote was in as of 8:30 p.m.

Turnout so far was reported as 32.69% overall, with 18,353 total votes cast in the primary. Engen received 9,357 (51.1%) of the votes cast for mayor, while Elder received 4,910 (26.8%), Shawn Knopp 17.65% and Greg Strandberg 3.8%.

Mayoral primary

Engen, who is running for his fifth term, has been Missoula’s mayor since 2006. He is Missoula’s longest-serving mayor.


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