The Day AfterBy
Congratulations to President Barack Obama on his re-election. He won Buncombe County by over 25,000 votes though we weren’t enough to hold North Carolina for him. That huge Buncombe County Democratic advantage didn’t show up in our local races due, in no small part, to recent redistricting that boxed Buncombe’s Democrats.
Both Patsy Keever and Hayden Rogers fell in heavily pro-Republican districts. Conservative Republicans Mark Meadows and Patrick McHenry will be representing Buncombe County in the US Congress. Only four of North Carolina’s thirteen Congressional representatives will be Democrats. The House of Representatives will remain in Republican hands, and the US Senate will remain in the hands of Democrats.
The Council of State races were mixed, though the gubernatorial race was a resounding victory for former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory. Republican Dan Forest narrowly won the race for Lieutenant Governor. Democrat Beth Wood maintained her job as NC Auditor. Republican Steve Troxler won Agriculture Commissioner, and Democrat Wayne Goodwin stays on as Insurance Commissioner. Elevator Queen Cherie Berry won Labor Commissioner by nearly 300,000 votes. Democrat Elaine Marshall won Secretary of State. Democrat June Atkinson won by a broad margin to remain Superintendent of Public Instruction. Lastly, Democrat Janet Cowell will stay on for another term as Treasurer. Statewide results are here.
I’m going to let someone else offer the judiciary results. They are mixed as well, but the NC Supreme Court race went to Republican Paul Newby.
Both Tim Moffitt and Nathan Ramsey handily defeated their challengers in NC House races, showing off deep warchests and newly drawn districts. Those races were colored by the efforts of conservative partisans to divide the people of Buncombe County, and the tactics were successful. Democratic Senator Martin Nesbitt coasted to victory over perennial candidate R.L. Clark. Susan Fisher, running unopposed, will have another term as well.
Republicans Joe Belcher and David King won seats on Buncombe County’s Board of Commissioners, and Republicans are likely to have won a majority. There will be a recount in District 2. With a very narrow margin of victory and ongoing confusion surrounding Warren Wilson College residents’ votes, getting that count correct could take some time. Chairman David Gantt, Commissioner Holly Jones, and former Asheville City Council member Brownie Newman had wide margins of victory. Democrat Drew Reisinger boasted a strong victory for the office of Register of Deeds. Veteran Jim Coman lost his race for Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor to Jeff Foster by fewer than 700 votes. See Buncombe County results here.
The water referendum sent a resounding message that Asheville voters would prefer the system be left alone. The water issue has several more chapters in it, and we’ll tackle that another day.
Them’s the facts. There’s a lot of dissection to do, and the results are going to have far-reaching consequences. I’m looking forward to working with all of our elected officials to move towards shared prosperity for all of the citizens of Buncombe County. After all, we’re all in this together.