By Luke Weir
North Carolina midterm primary elections determined one Democratic and five Republican races in Watauga County on Tuesday, as well as a one quarter cent sales tax increase that did not pass. With primaries over, candidates have until midterm election day on November 6 to campaign against opposing party candidates.
Virginia Foxx, incumbent Republican United States House Representative for District 5, won her primary against Dillon Gentry and Cortland Meader, nearly 2,000 votes ahead of Gentry, who finished second. Meanwhile, DD Adams topped Jenny Marshall to earn the Democratic nomination, despite Marshall winning the Watauga County vote by just over 100 ballots. Adams hopes to retire Foxx in the November election.
In the race for state senate, a pair of Republican incumbents, Deanna Ballard and Shirley Blackburn Randleman, were pitted against each another in primaries due to recent redistricting. Ballard beat Randleman to earn the Republican nomination and will face Democrat Brandon Anderson in the midterm election.
Incumbent Republican N.C. House Representative Jonathan Jordan beat Appalachian State University student Robert Block in the primary and will be campaigning against ASU professor, local weather guru and Democratic candidate Ray Russell to hold the seat.
In local government, for the District 5 spot on Watauga County Board of Commissioners, Tommy Sofield beat Allen Trivette in the Republican primary and will face Democrat Charlie Wallin in November.
The midterm will also feature a vote for the District 3 and 4 seats on the Board of Commissioners. In District 3, incumbent Democrat Billy Kennedy faces Republican Tim Hodges. In District 4, incumbent Democrat Larry Turnbow is challenged by Republican David Blust.
The final Republican primary vote was between Tim Holman and David Searcy for a nomination to Watauga County Sheriff. Searcy won the vote and will challenge incumbent Democrat Len Hagaman in the midterm election.
Other races in the midterm that were decided before the primaries include Watauga County Clerk of Superior Court, where incumbent Democrat Diane Cornett Deal will defend her position against Republican Travis Critcher. Additionally, Seth Banks is re-running unopposed for District Attorney.
A non-partisan vote will be held for Watauga County Board of Education. Incumbents Jason Cornett, Gary Childers and Jay Fenwick are running for re-election, while Steve Combs and Danny Watts hope to earn an appointment.
For a list of the races mentioned above, see below, where D denotes a Democratic Party candidate, and R represents a Republican Party candidate.
U.S. House of Representatives (District 05):
– Virginia Foxx, R (Incumbent)
– DD Adams, D
N.C. State Senate (District 45):
– Deanna Ballard, R (Incumbent)
– Brandon Anderson, D
N.C. House of Representatives (District 093):
– Jonathan Jordan, R (Incumbent)
– Ray Russell, D
Watauga County Board of Commissioners:
– Billy Kennedy, D (Incumbent)
– Tim Hodges, R
– Larry Turnbow, D (Incumbent)
– David Blust, R
– Tommy Sofield, R
– Charlie Wallin, D
District Attorney (District 35):
– Seth Banks (Incumbent)
Watauga County Clerk of Superior Court:
– Diane Cornett Deal, D (Incumbent)
– Travis Critcher, R
Watauga County Sheriff:
– Len Hagaman, D (Incumbent)
– David Searcy, R
Watauga County Board of Education (nonpartisan):
– Jason Cornett (Incumbent)
– Gary Childers (Incumbent)
– Jay Fenwick (Incumbent)
– Steve Combs
– Danny Watts