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Local Republicans win big

(Top) Rep. Joe Kiser speaks to the crowd gathered at Republican headquarters Tuesday night after final election results were announced. “Right always wins, and right won tonight,” Kiser said. (Below) Tom Anderson and Alex Patton celebrate their seats on the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners. Diane Turbyfill / LTN Photo

2 newcomers take seats on county board

Inside Republican headquarters Tuesday night, there was excitement in the air.
People crowded into the small, stuffy room and waited as numbers were shouted out and written on a board in the back of the office.
After every tally, ear-stinging applause and cheers filled the room and drifted out onto Academy Street.
The sounds grew louder as each precinct total came in. By the time 28 of 29 had been read, it had become almost deafening.
It was another local victory for the Republicans.
The three Republican candidates for the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners easily claimed their seats, taking home almost 80 percent of the total votes.
About 68 percent of registered voters turned out for this year’s elections, according to elections officials. That’s a county record.
Incumbent commissioner Tom Anderson claimed the most votes, with a total 18,701, or 27.1 percent.
Newcomer Marie Moore came in just inches behind Anderson with 18,560, or 26.89 percent.
And Alex Patton brought in 17,770 votes — 25.75 percent.
They soundly defeated the other two candidates, Democrat Brad Duke, who received 10,383 votes, and Libertarian Shane Killian, who got 3,597.
That means the five seats on the board will again be filled by five Republicans.
All three commissioners-elect pledged to work together to do what is best for Lincoln County.
“We have been given a high honor, and we must now be worthy of it,” said Anderson, a one-term incumbent.
Patton, who has run for school board twice unsuccessfully, and Moore, a political unknown, immediately promised to be representatives of the entire county.
“When we’re sworn in, we serve all the residents of Lincoln County, not just the Republicans,” Patton said.
Moore said her first motion as commissioner will be to hold meetings in the three areas of the county.
Tuesday night as the votes were announced, Moore quietly celebrated the results.
“I’m pleased, I’m just overwhelmed, just like I was in the primary,” she said.
The three spoke to the Republicans gathered after results from the final precinct, Iron Station South, were announced.
“I told Alex and Marie, ‘You’re in trouble,’” Anderson joked. “They are capable, we are capable. We are going to do everything we can to live up to the honor given to us.”
Duke congratulated the Republicans on the win and thanked his supporters.
“Given the fact that I was virtually an unknown the first time out, I’ve got a lot to be proud of,” Duke said. “I’m not willing to say this was all for nothing.”
He promises he will be back and intends on running in the next election.
“I’m not giving up,” he said. “I’ve never given up in my life, and I’m not about to start now.”
Anderson, Moore and Patton will join commissioners James “Buddy” Funderburk and Carrol Mitchem on the board.
The official canvass of votes will be completed Tuesday, Nov. 9.

by Alice Smith

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