Challenger night in Blowing Rock: Sellers and Powell unseat incumbents (unofficial)

Challenger night in Blowing Rock: Sellers and Powell unseat incumbents (unofficial)
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By David Rogers. November 7, 2017. BLOWING ROCK, NC — Call him the “Comeback Kid.”

Blowing Rock News coverage of Blowing Rock Town Government is made possible by a sponsorship from Blowing Rock Medical Park and PLUS Urgent Care, divisions of UNC-Caldwell Health Care System

COVER IMAGE: Then candidate Charlie Sellers addresses the audience during the Candidate Forum hosted by the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce. Photographic image by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News.

After getting decisively defeated (approximately 61% to 39%) in his first attempt to unseat J.B. Lawrence as Mayor in November 2015, Blowing Rock native and local businessman Charlie Sellers turned the tables Tuesday, unofficially winning the Mayor’s seat on Town Council by a healthy margin, 281 (56.20%) to 218 (43.60%) of votes cast in the Watauga County side of Blowing Rock. It was 17-9 in favor of Sellers across the border in Caldwell County. There was one undisclosed write-in vote in the Watauga County tallies. As of this writing, it was not clear whether absentee ballots are included in those vote totals, but early voting results were posted on the North Carolina State Board of Elections website after polls were closed but before the precincts had reported results from Tuesday’s voting.

With Caldwell and Watauga voting combined, the unofficial balloting results show Sellers 298, Lawrence 227.

Reached by telephone for comment, Sellers noted to Blowing Rock News, “My first job is to go pick up all of my signs. I don’t want to get fined by the Town.” Blowing Rock News will have an in-depth interview with Sellers on Wednesday.

For the Board of Commissioners seat, which had four candidates for three open seats, challenger Virginia Powell polled the third highest vote total (both counties combined), at 287, outdistancing incumbent Ray Pickett’s 231.  Incumbents Doug Matheson (405) and Sue Sweeting (354) were re-elected.

In Boone, Mayor Rennie Brantz ran unopposed, capturing 1,242 (94.52%) votes vs. 72 undisclosed write-ins.  For Boone Town Council, the three top vote getters were Sam Furgiuele (905), Connie Ulmer (822) and Marshall Ashcraft (821).

Blowing Rock Mayor (Unofficial)

  • Watauga County
    • Charlie Sellers 281
    • J.B. Lawrence 218
    • Write-In 1
  • Caldwell County
    • Charlie Sellers 17
    • J.B. Lawrence 9
  • Combined Totals
    • Charlie Sellers 298
    • J.B. Lawrence 227
    • Write-In (undisclosed name) 1

Blowing Rock Board of Commissioners (Unofficial)

  • Watauga County
    • Doug Matheson 393
    • Sue Sweeting 331
    • Virginia Powell 270
    • Ray Pickett 222
    • Write-In 20
  • Caldwell County
    • Sue Sweeting 23
    • Virginia Powell 17
    • Doug Matheson 12
    • Ray Pickett 9
    • Write-In 0
  • Combined Totals
    • Doug Matheson 405
    • Sue Sweeting 354
    • Virginia Powell 287
    • Ray Pickett 231
    • Write-In (undisclosed names) 20

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