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Write-in candidate certified for sheriff race

ELIZABETH HEFFNER
Staff Writer

This fall, Lincoln County residents will choose between two contenders running for the office of Lincoln County sheriff.
According to Board of Elections Director Bradley Putnam, Anthony Huss will run against incumbent sheriff David Carpenter as a write-in candidate for the position this election.
“I will be a write-in, so people will have to stop and think in order to deliberately vote for more,” Huss said. “I’d prefer that kind of vote over getting a straight ticket type any day.”
According to General Statute 163-123, write-in candidates running for a county office must present a petition to the county board of elections, signed by minimum of 100 qualified voters eligible to vote for the office on or before noon of the 90th day prior to the general election.
“The deadline was at noon on Aug. 6 for any write-in candidates to file for sheriff,” Huss said. “Some people think we can simply write in a person’s name in the blank on Election Day. I was one of them. However, this is not true.
“Election laws require that a candidate file a wide spectrum of forms, affidavits, financial statements, campaign treasurer certification, bank account information, etc.,” he continued. “And most important is the will of the People…the citizens much actually mandate that they desire the candidate to represent them. In order to prove this, a write-in candidate must collect a large number of signatures from qualified registered voters. The Board of Elections is then tasked with processing and verifying each name and signature against the database of Lincoln County voters.”
According to Putnam, Huss turned in a petition last week with 208 signatures. However, Putnam and his office were only able to verify 109 of the signatures, certifying him as a write-in candidate for the sheriff’s office.
“On our ballot, we previously did not have a place to put in a write-in candidate because Carpenter was running unopposed,” Putnam said. “While Huss’ name will not be on the ballot, he now has the opportunity to be voted in as a write-in candidate.”
Last month, Huss officially announced his intentions to run for office with a float in Lincolnton’s Independence Day parade. During his last interview with the Lincoln Times-News, he stressed that his biggest focus, if elected, would be on transparency and accountability.
“If I accomplish nothing else this campaign, at least now our citizens have a choice they can make instead of having an incumbent unopposed sheriff forced upon them,” he said. “That doesn’t really feel much like an American election when (Carpenter) can win with just one vote by voting for himself.”

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