A car dealer who does her own TV commercials was elected mayor of Las Vegas, while former Mayor Richard G. Hatcher failed in a comeback bid in Gary, Ind. Voters in Aspen, Colo., chose a restaurateur to succeed their ultraliberal mayor.
In Indianapolis, a former prosecutor and a state senator won Tuesday's primaries and will face off in November's general election.Jan Laverty Jones, who rose to fame in Las Vegas pitching cars, got 21,758 votes, or 52 percent, against several opponents. Her closest finisher, City Councilman Steve Miller, received 11,377 votes, or 27 percent.
By winning more than half the vote, Jones avoided a June 4 runoff.
In Gary, Mayor Thomas V. Barnes easily turned back a challenge for the Democratic nomination from Hatcher.
Barnes, who had 14,077 votes, or 45 percent, with 83 percent of the vote counted early Wednesday, is all but assured of re-election in heavily Democratic Gary's November election. Hatcher was second with 8,007 votes, or 25 percent.
One of the first black mayors of a major city when elected in 1967, Hatcher served for 20 years, losing the Democratic nomination to Barnes four years ago.
In the ritzy ski resort of Aspen, restaurateur John Bennett garnered 958 votes, or 60 percent, to 561 votes, or 35 percent, for former City Council member Pat Fallin.
Bennett will succeed Mayor Bill Stirling, whose eight years in office were marked by one controversial stand after another.
Stirling, who did not seek re-election, brought national attention to Aspen and its 3,600 year-round residents with anti-nuclear, anti-war, anti-fur, anti-smoking, pro-animal rights and pro-women's rights positions.
A year ago, Stirling and his wife led a drive to make it illegal to sell furs in Aspen. The referendum failed, and observers said the measure's defeat marked a major shift in Aspen politics.
In Indianapolis, 16-year Mayor William H. Hudnut also chose not to seek re-election.
Republican voters picked former Marion County Prosecutor Stephen Goldsmith from a field of three candidates, while Democrats chose state Sen. Louis Mahern from a field of four. The two will meet in November.