After ending in a tie, Greg Metzger defeated Laura Miller Werley by six votes in the primary race for Gallatin County’s clerk and recorder position.

Metzger beat Werley for the Republican nomination and will now face Eric Semerad, who ran unopposed in the primary election as a Democrat. Metzger won with 5,003 votes, taking 49.78 percent of the vote, while Werley earned 4,997 votes, taking 49.72 percent of the vote.

On the morning after the primary race, unofficial election results pegged Werley and Metzger in a tie with each of the Republican candidates bringing in 4,965 votes.

Metzger, who was at the final tally count on Monday, said he was surprised and pleased to know that he came out the victor in the race. He said he thinks there’s still a lot of people who don’t know who he is and how his skill base relates to the job. Between now and the general election, he said he hopes to get out and talk to people.

“Step one is done,” Metzger said. “Step two is to get out there and work hard, and let people know who I am.”

Since Metzger won by 0.06 percent of the vote, Werley has the chance to ask for a recount. The deadline to ask for the recount is June 23.

Werley, who was also at the finally tally on Monday, said she wasn’t sure if she would ask for the recount and that she has time to think about it. She said obviously the results were not what she had hoped.

“I don’t think now is a good time to make a knee-jerk decision,” she said.

The clerk and recorder serves a four-year term and is charged with overseeing elections, maintaining public records and serves as the clerk to the Gallatin County Commission. Current clerk and recorder Charlotte Mills will retire at the end of this term.

Freddy Monares can be reached at 406-582-2630, or by email at


Freddy Monares covers politics and county government for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle.

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