Candidates for Office in Buncombe County Races


candidates2.jpgThe filing deadline is today, so there may be a few stragglers still to announce, but this is where the races stand now.

Democrats who have filed to run in Buncombe County Board of Commissioners’ primary on May 6, 2008:

Bill Stanley, incumbent who sold public parkland and held secret meetings with Progress Energy
Vernon Dover, who “worked for Progress Energy for 40 years before retiring, the last eight as commercial-industrial account manager”
Carol Weir Peterson, incumbent queen of the Old Guard of Buncombe politics who also assented to selling public parkland and holding secret meetings with Progress Energy
K. Ray Bailey, former head of A-B Tech who is rumored to have filed with Carol Peterson and Bill Stanley at his side.
Keith Thomson, Asheville Business Leader
Holly Jones, sitting Asheville City Councilmember, former Vice-Mayor, head of the YWCA
Robert E. “Bob” Hill, former Chamber of Commerce director and Realtor “Retired Telephone Contractor of 39 years and was in top mamagement of D. O. Creasman Electroncs, Inc. for that time. He is also part owner of Cruizers Restaurant in Candler NC.”
Cecil Bothwell, populist hero, most popular journalist in western North Carolina, editor of Asheville City Paper, founding member of Asheville/Buncombe Policy Institute
J. Ray Elingburg, Former Buncombe Clerk of Court, former A-B Tech Trustee, mentor to Bob Christy

Then there’s David Gantt (D) running against Nathan Ramsey (R) for Chair of the Commission.

It’s kind of creepy having a K. Ray and a J. Ray on the ballot. Their ties to the Old Guard leave me suspicious, but their hard work at A-B Tech has my respect.

Chad Nesbitt acolytes will have three candidates on the ballot on May 6th. Carolina Stompers members Don Yelton, Paul Perdue, and R.L. Clark are lumbering into their respective races. Clark declared his candidacy for NC Senate yesterday on Matt Mittan’s Take A Stand radio show. He’s looking to challenge Chad’s father, Senator Martin Nesbitt, for the seat, which encompasses Buncombe County. Paul Perdue is running against Democrat Bruce Goforth in House District 115.

A comment in the Asheville Politics mailing list indicates that Clark may run from his Stomper affiliation, but for now his picture is still featured on their main page.

Republican Joe Dunn, who lost to Terry Bellamy in the race for mayor in 2005, filed to run for Buncombe County Commission. Dunn, known as Dr. No for his opposition to most everything, joins these Republicans in the County Commission race:

Don Yelton, Carolina Stomper and Sender of False Information
John Carroll, Head of CIBO and Real Estate Broker
Mike Fryar, father of Board of Realtors and Bill Russell shill, Christy Fryar
Ron McKee, part owner and President of the Asheville Tourists
Steve Bledsoe, who pulled 523 votes in a failed run for Asheville City Council last year and who changed his registration from Unaffiliated to Republican for this race.

For House District seat 116, being vacated by Republican Charles Thomas, we’ve got Democrat Jane Whilden running against Asheville Republican, Tim Moffitt. Whilden is Governor Mike Easley’s western director and Moffitt is the CEO of an international recruiting firm.

Otto Debruhl, another Old Guard stalwart, is running unopposed for Register of Deeds.

Susan Fisher is running unopposed for NC House seat 114.

I’m sure there’s something or someone I’ve missed, so please fill in the blanks in the comments.

Categories : Democrats, Local, Republicans


  1. Richard Bernier says:

    Hey Gordon,

    Can you give me a call?

    Email me direct for my number or your number.


    Richard Bernier


  2. David Roat says:

    this is going to be the best political theater ever.

  3. Arratik says:

    Better than the spat between Homer Honeycutt and Pete Bradley a few years ago?

  4. Bill Fallstaff says:

    I’m for turning OUT all the incumbents. They have been too cozy with developers and Progress Energy. I like Holly Jones for the job. I’ll have to study up on the other challengers.

  5. RHS says:

    I like Holly Jones but have some reservations about voting for her because I really don’t want to see her leave City Council.

  6. Gordon Smith says:

    Welcome to the comments, Bill. Nice to meet you.

  7. Jerimee says:

    Oh my honey, look at what I found on this weird blog, it is a list of swell Democrats running for North Carolina State Senate

  8. shadmarsh says:

    on a somewhat related note: if you haven’t seen it yet looks like Mr. Chad has had a little run in with Johnny Law:


  9. Gordon Smith says:


    I wrote this at the Mtn. X post:

    “Lord knows I’m no fan of Chad Nesbitt, but this sounds like a bunch of guys having a card game and some drinks. Ron Moore’s ears have been burning for a while now though, and a lot of the heat may have been coming out of that card game.”

    This is pretty strange. There are a lot of card games going on at any given time in Buncombe County. Nesbitt certainly has been busy raising his profile, so maybe that ‘s the rationale behind his game becoming a law enforcement priority. With illegal gambling all the rage now among those who miss Medford’s crime family, it could be that Chad was just next on the list.

    I’m sure Ron Moore won’t lose any sleep tonight either way.

  10. Arratik says:

    I’m prone to agree with teh Chad – “big whoop”. Sounds like an intimidation tactic to me.

    Backroom poker games are a time-honored tradition.

  11. David Roat says:

    ‘friendly poker games’ that I’ve been to are usually four to six guys, byob, playing for $100 jackpots.

    the following sounds more like a speakeasy to me: 12-20 cars, on a weekly basis, $3500 in cash plus the value of what was on the table in chips. video poker machines and a bar.

    also, Nesbitt’s comments are a little suspicious. If he was just using his property to host poker games without taking a ‘house cut’ of the winnings or selling booze, he could just say so. but to deny that there was any gambling at all is nonsense.

  12. bobaloo says:

    Never mind all that.
    How does Jesus feel about gambling and drinking on Sunday?

  13. bobaloo says:

    Doh! It looks like Shad and I had the same concern over what the little baby Jesus thinks.

  14. John Warren says:

    Sounds like Nesbitt is another one of the classic republicans that yell and shout about all the bad things democrats are doing and then it turns out that they are doing those very things behind closed doors in very shady ways.

  15. Carolyn Hill says:

    Mr. Gordon Smith
    Mr. Robert E, (Bob)Hill} has never been a director of Chamber of Commerce and he has never been a Realtor..He is a Retired Telephone Contractor of 39 years and was in top mamagement of D. O. Creasman Electroncs, Inc. for that time. He is also part owner of Cruizers Restaurant in Candler NC. Pleae correct your information.
    Carolyn Hill

  16. Gordon Smith says:

    Thanks, Carolyn!

    Will do.

  17. Alan Ditmore says:

    Holley Jones IS an incumbant, as is Joe Dunn, Ellingburg, and several others were on the Board of Education, Dover? Carrol? I’m totally committed to voting against zoning and that means Yelton and then I’m not sure between Carrol, Fryar, and Bledsoe.

    Zoning is racist!

  18. Gordon Smith says:

    You’re a real go-getter, Alan. If you think that not having zoning and selling the county to the highest bidder is a better future, then rock on!

  19. Alan Ditmore says:

    There will be no one “highest bidder,” the highest bidderS for lots of little bits will be able to site trailers and have AFFORDABLE HOUSING!!
    NO ZONING IN ELITIST BEABVERDAM, where Elaine Lite lives.

  20. Gordon Smith says:

    Why don’t you tell us what you’re talking about, Alan, instead of just using ALLCAPS and multiple exclamation points. Are you calling Elaine Lite a racist elitist? What’s your deal?

  21. Alan Ditmore says:

    Yes. She lives in Beaverdam which lack affordable housing and diversity.