It was Primary Day! ***UPDATED, with results***

With a low turnout (12.2 percent in Buncombe) voters spoke in today’s primary elections.

In a closely watched local race, challenger Patsy Keever defeated four-term incumbent Bruce Goforth decisively for the Democratic nomination in the 115th House District, with 59.8 percent of the vote. Keever will face Republican Mark Crawford for the seat in November.

In a crowded Republican field for the 11th District Congressional nomination, Jeff Miller bested five other candidates to take the nomination, taking 40.15% of the vote. His nearest rival, Dan Eichenbaum carried Buncombe, but lost in Henderson and other counties in the district. If Miller’s margin holds after provisional ballot are counted, he’ll have narrowly avoided a runoff election with Eichenbaum.

Over in the fight for the 11th District Democratic nomination, incumbent Rep. Heath Shuler defeated challenger Aixa Wilson. However, Wilson, a relatively unknown candidate, made a surprisingly strong showing, carrying nearly 40 percent of the vote and winning Buncombe with 52 percent.

R.L. Clark defeated Don Yelton for the Republican State Senate nomination. Clark, a former N.C. House member, will face Senate Majority Leader Martin Nesbitt.

Sheriff Van Duncan crushed challenger Rocky Owenby for the Democratic nomination, getting more than 80 percent of the vote.

The election saw an extremely low turnout, with only 12.2 percent of registered voters showing up. Out of 173,888 registered voters in the county, only 21,327 voted. Buncombe’s turnout was slightly lower than the state average of 14.3 percent

For the full election results, go here. For ongoing analysis of the results, and the latest news from Xpress’ Twitter feed, visit our Election Page.

Consider this post an open forum to express your opinions on the primaries, whether it’s which candidates you supported, what issues you think are most important in this year, what topics deserve more attention or what you think tonight’s results mean.

— David Forbes, senior reporter

SHARE

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

39 thoughts on “It was Primary Day! ***UPDATED, with results***

  1. J

    The Shuler results should serve as a warning to republicans; they may have vastly underrated democratic anger/voter enthusiasm for those who vote against health care.

    It also probably serves as a warning sign to Shuler that he’s not as loved as he thought, and he may kick up the campaign early this year. He hasn’t campaigned here since 2006, so he may need to get going.

    If Shuler looks vulnerable (which he does at 60-40), and Miller is able to avoid a runoff, the RNC may like that picture and send some cash down to Miller to help him out. I wouldn’t be surprised if all of the “experts” changed this seat from likely D to leans D.

  2. Obama Elitist

    Dr. Dan’s loss is devastating to the 11th District. Shuler’s gain. Sickening.

  3. annica2

    the rnc has already sent miler a ton of cash. that’s how he won the primary without any grassroots support. he was thrown in at the last minute when they saw dan eichenbaum taking it away easily. i still don’t see how the guy won. he lost every poll even to the other candidates amongst republicans. eichenbaum had every bit of grassroots support on his side. the debates are pretty much going to be a shuler vs. shuler, corporatist vs. corporatist kool aid exchange. they will be boring, and appealing to complacent voters.

  4. J

    Johnny,

    There’s always that chance. What else, if nothing, is the potentially meaningless conjecture about the intentions of those who are most likely to vote, but fun?

    To contradict my previous post, PPP says enthusiasm may be down for the dems:

    “What the turnout numbers do show is a disturbing lack of interest from Democratic voters. The 426,000 who cast a ballot in the Senate primary represents a 32% decline from the 628,000 who did in 2002, and this is despite the fact that after the 2008 election cycle there are more registered Democrats in the state than ever.”
    http://tinyurl.com/22nzhc6

    Looks good for Burr.

  5. MusicLover45

    “Aixa Wilson made a surprisingly strong showing, carrying nearly 40 percent of the vote and winning Buncombe with 52 percent”.

    Hopefully this is a wake-up call to Rep. (which could stand for Representative or Republican) Schuler. I was one of the “52 percent” who voted against him.

  6. nthatcher

    “the rnc has already sent miler a ton of cash. that’s how he won the primary without any grassroots support.”

    I’m sorry but that’s really absurd.

    What RNC money? They all file the same FEC reports. Are you suggesting that Miller is laundering money?? Not a dime from DC – zip.

    BUT – Lots of donations from hundreds of individuals (aka grassroots) around the district.

    Eichenbaum had some great volunteers but only about 10 donors, most of them relatives, that it not strong support.

    If he hadn’t been able to write him self a check for $100K+ he would have been tied with Newman and West.

    the facts, if you want to be honest and fair, are all public record at opensecrets or the fec.

  7. “Eichenbaum had some great volunteers but only about 10 donors”

    This is false.

    Dr. Dan received campaign contributions from every county in the district. In the election, he won in 8 out of fifteen counties.
    ……………………….

  8. nthatcher

    Sorry, not trying to slam Eichenbaum. Like I said his volunteers were everywhere even in McDowell where we usually get ignored.

    I was just pointing out the silliness of the poster who wants to suggest that Miller won with some mob-style RNC bags of cash as opposed to a whole bunch of donors and volunteers (mostly vets here) of his own.

    Two good men, two good campaigns. I guess if Miller had lost, some of his supporters would be posting trash with no merit about how Eichenbaum won “unfairly”.

  9. @Tim:

    You can spin all you want.

    The % of voters in 5 of those 8 counties contributed less than 5% each of the turnout Tuesday.

    What is very significant is the low turnout in Buncombe County, the home of ATPAC. Did you guys even have a GOTV plan?

    Here are the donors to the Eichenbaum campaign up until April 14th
    http://bit.ly/9WQkdf

    Funny, but I don’t see your name on the list. 16 people were listed on only one page. How much of the $1,000 from the Asheville Tea Pac was your money? Was it enought to even bother reporting to the FEC?

    Miller’s contributors number 8 pages and about ten times as many people. http://bit.ly/bJlnDV

    I realize the complete FEC data (after April 14) data won’t be available until later, but I don’t expect a significant surge in the donor list.

    @nthatcher:

    The people saying that Miller’s Campaign was bought and paid for are a classic example of psychological projection, replacing a select group of interlopers for the RNC.

  10. Webmaster, please add:

    text-align:left;

    to:

    .commenttext{} in file mxstyle.css

    It would make it so much easier to read comments if they were left-aligned.

  11. BTW, Tim…I thought you claimed to be an Objectivist? The way you spin the numbers with vague pronouncements seems to suggest that you should bill yourself as a Subjectivist. /s

  12. nthatcher

    Thunder Pig,

    I do not think that your comments are productive.

    I met both Miller and Eichenbaum on at forums and am told that they developed a solid mutual respect during the campaign. I doubt either of them would want their “fans” tossing sticks at the other.

  13. annica2

    i was not focusing on the fairness of the fundraising. i was talking about a principled man vs. an unprincipled puppet of the washington dc corporate establishment. that is what i meant by rnc cash. the corporations that work closely with both the rnc and the dnc(oil companies, banks etc) funded his campaign, and the rnc saw that and endorsed his candidacy against eichenbaum when they saw the real liberty loving individual easily taking the nomination.

    grassroots? ha. the reason there are 8 pages of donations documented in the fec for miller is because all of his donations were extremely large in comparison to dan’s few large documented donations from his family and the tea party, and tons of small donations from people in the district and liberty slate advocates etc.

    the reason those “grassroots” oil companies and banks funded his campaign is because they know he will either be on their side or lose to shuler who will also be on their side in creating the monopolies that weed out their competition in the market. there will be no difference in the outcome for this district between either shuler or miller. they are both corporatists, without principle or vision.

    i trust the results of this election about as much as i trust looking at the fec for my information.

  14. mgarren

    Do people actually think Shuler is a Democrat??

    He is far too conservative for that. I personally find his positions on most things to be firmly in line with all the other religious political extremists who control things here. Even Dems who are more liberal than he is are far too conservative for me. This last election is the last chance the Dems have as far as I’m concerned. I might as well vote for what I believe instead of the “lesser evil”. I hope there will be a viable 3rd party soon, one that is actually socially progressive instead the freakish Dems who now claim to be progressive.

  15. nthatcher

    annica2:

    “the corporations that work
    closely with both the rnc and the dnc(oil companies, banks etc) funded his
    campaign,”

    I am sorry but what are you talking about?

    Are you suggesting that his donors, all of whom are individuals almost entirely from Henderson County, are some sort of laundering front group for banks and oil companies?

    That is bizarre at best.

    By that logic, should we suppose that Eichenbaum’s donors, mostly from his home county as well, are also part of some conpiracy?

    “the rnc saw that and endorsed his candidacy”

    Who? When? The rnc doesn’t even make endorsements. Do you mean the NRCC? They didn’t endorse anyone either.

    It is one thing to be mad, it is another to just make stuff up at random that is so black & white false.

  16. @nthatcher “Czar of Productive Commenting”: ;-p

    Any one of the six fine men that ran would be better than Congressman Shuler.

    As long as certain malcontents are around throwing sticks and “stretching” the truth, I’ll be here picking up the sticks, throwing them back and pointing out the stretch marks in the truth…and where the truth has been stretched past the breaking point.

    @annica2:

    There is no basis for your claim. I am seeing only $8,000 or so in undocumented aggregate donations to Dr Dan’s Campaign. I haven’t had time to look through Miller’s list yet. I went through Dr Dan’s 1st b/c it was the shortest.

    Don;t trust the FEC data? Just wow. Paranoia will Destroy ya…

  17. annica2

    oh forgive me. not the rnc. the ncgop, who in turn, bows to it’s respective overlords, the rnc. miller was hand picked by them. isn’t that great?

    why would you keep talking about laundering? i could care less how anyone got their cash at this point. and the banks and oil companies actually show on his fec report. not that i even give a crap. but it’s there. it shows what team he is on.

    my point is the above one. dan eichenbaum is anti-irs, anti-federal reserve, anti-nation building, anti-dept. of education. jeff miller is pro all of those things. that is my point. and you should figure dr. dan was a part of a conspiracy. the one to bring liberty back to the table, by bringing down the establishment.

    to thunderpig: i’m certainly not paranoid of the data that’s there on the fec website. i am just not complacent enough to make a straw man argument about who had the most grassroots support based on that lack of information.

  18. nthatcher

    annica2,

    now i am only responding in case someone reading this accidentally thinks that your fantasies and charges devoid of ANY facts have any merit.

    “oh forgive me. not the rnc. the ncgop, who in turn, bows to it’s respective overlords, the rnc. miller was hand picked by them.”

    Wow! I knocked down your RNC theory so now its the NCGOP.

    I’ve been involved in GOP politics in McDowell and Mecklenburg for over 30 years and the NCGOP has “hand picked” and endorsed a candidate in a congressional primary, let me count – oh, yes, ZERO times.

    Please show us one hint of evidence from anywhere to back it up. Who will it be next? He was chosen by the Men in Black?

    “and the banks and oil companies actually show on his fec report. not that i even give a crap. but it’s there.”

    Are you really that comfortable saying things 100% opposite of what is true, and so easy to blow away?

    Please, show us where “bank and oil” show up on his fec report. I have reviewed it and the Open Secret condensed version and that is FALSE.

    Please show us where you found these “facts” you use to demean a man you do not know.

    Tick tock.

  19. R.Bernier opinions

    Though we have not agreed upon much in the past, Thunder Pig is right on this issue.
    RB

  20. Piffy!

    [b]grassroots? ha. the reason there are 8 pages of donations documented in the fec for miller is because all of his donations were extremely large in comparison to dan’s few large documented donations from his family and the tea party, and tons of small donations from people in the district and liberty slate advocates etc.[/b]

    Is this supposed to make sense?

  21. annica2

    “I’ve been involved in GOP politics in McDowell and Mecklenburg for over 30 years and the NCGOP has “hand picked” and endorsed a candidate in a congressional primary, let me count – oh, yes, ZERO times.”

    to respond, using an article from january 15th with a piece of information that has been in several newspapers:

    “Miller, who founded HonorAir in 2006 to fly World War II veterans to Washington, D.C., to tour the World War II Memorial and other D.C. sites, was recruited by party officials last fall before he announced he wouldn’t run. He was welcomed back to the race with open arms by the National Republican Congressional Committee on Friday.”

    well, what party was it from if not the ncgop?

    i actually do know miller. i’ve met him and talked to him on more than one occasion. maybe your 30 years in the party are muddling up any kind of argument you can make regarding an actual issue.

    “Please, show us where “bank and oil” show up on his fec report. I have reviewed it and the Open Secret condensed version and that is FALSE.”

    ok.

    HENDERSON OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE/OWNER FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/12/2010 $500
    MS HENDERSON OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE/ OWNER FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/12/2010 $500
    WELLS FARGO/REGIONAL MGR-BROKER LITTLE ROCK AR 72211 03/19/2010 $500

    JH REABEN OIL CO./EXECUTIVE/PRESIDENT HENDERSONVILLE NC 28739 03/17/2010 $1,000

    CAROLINA 1ST BANK/BANK EXECUTIVE FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/23/2010 $1,000

    WRIGHT OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE OWNER HENDERSONVILLE NC 28793 03/23/2010 $500

    now that this is exhausted, can you please move onto the issues?

  22. annica2

    “Is this supposed to make sense?”

    yes. establishment donations vs. individual donations and volunteer work, to be blunt enough for you.

  23. otfwg

    You people really crack me up. LOL Banks and oil companies?
    Really annica2? Obama received plenty from banks and oil companies. Where is the outrage? ROFL

    MANY of the Newman and West supporters will now be supporting Miller especially due to the nasty comments made by the ATPAC and other Dr. Dan supporters. That only turned people off to Dr. Dan.

  24. @annica2:

    As far as grassroots support, 34.00% for Eichenbaum vs 40.15% shows a 7% split in people who bothered to show at the polls.

    I’ll try another time to dispel your ‘notion’ that donations to Millers Campaign were of larger average size than Eichenbaum’s, this time with a closer look at the data, instead of unsubstantiated claims.

    Eichenbaum

    FEC records show $16,930 was given by 16 people
    FEC records show $8,012 was given by an unknown number of people.

    Average donated by known people: $1,058

    Miller

    FEC records show $92,075 was given by 156 people
    FEC records show $24,855 was given by an unknown number of people.

    Average donated by known people $590.

    and for a look at the other side…

    Shuler

    FEC records show $283,550 was given by 280 people
    FEC records show $13,921 was given by an unknown number of people.

    Average donated by known people $1,012.

    So, I wonder how you measure grass roots support? Is it the amount of donations to a campaign? Is it the number of people who donate to a campaign? Is it the Campaign that has the lowest average dollar amount per donor?

    Or is the number of people who vote for the candidate in straw polls or online polls?

    Or, is it the number of people who bother to cast a ballot during early voting or on election day?

    Just because someone claims a lock on the grass roots doesn’t make it so.

    The first use of the phrase “grassroots and boots” is thought to have been coined by Senator Albert Jeremiah Beveridge of Indiana, who said of the Progressive Party in 1912, “This party has come from the grass roots. It has grown from the soil of people’s hard necessities.”

    I don’t believe anyone in this race can claim they have overwhelming grassroots support [though that hasn’t stopped the propagandizing from a few], even the incumbent, who has outperformed our guys on almost every measurement index I listed earlier, save the number of votes. Democrats voted in greater numbers than the Republicans in their Congressional Race, even though there was no doubt that Shuler would win.

    By all accounts, our race had more people involved from far more diverse political viewpoints than the other side, yet some 7,700 more people voted in the race with a foregone conclusion. Why is that?

    I think it is because our guys [the candidates and their campaigns], by and large, have failed to get the word out. They have failed to motivate anyone other than the political junkies, whether they’ve been one for years or are new junkies minted by the Tea Party protests last year.

  25. annica2

    “I’ll try another time to dispel your ‘notion’ that donations to Millers Campaign were of larger average size than Eichenbaum’s, this time with a closer look at the data, instead of unsubstantiated claims.”

    i didn’t make that notion. the average crunch has nothing to do with what i said. when oil companies and banks like your platform(or lack thereof), chances are, there will be a lot of rich people donating to your campaign. and i don’t even care. this must be your way of continuing to avoid the issues that drove both campaigns.

  26. otfwg

    The largest donation appears to be that of Eichenbaum himself.
    So much for the criticism of rich people, huh?

  27. nthatcher

    You are too funny. This will be my last try to show how silly your “oil and bank companies backed miller” is:

    ” HENDERSON OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE/OWNER FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/12/2010 $500
    MS HENDERSON OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE/ OWNER FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/12/2010 $500
    WELLS FARGO/REGIONAL MGR-BROKER LITTLE ROCK AR 72211 03/19/2010 $500

    JH REABEN OIL CO./EXECUTIVE/PRESIDENT HENDERSONVILLE NC 28739 03/17/2010 $1,000

    CAROLINA 1ST BANK/BANK EXECUTIVE FLAT ROCK NC 28731 03/23/2010 $1,000

    WRIGHT OIL COMPANY/EXECUTIVE OWNER HENDERSONVILLE NC 28793 03/23/2010 $500

    One Wells Farge regional manager at $500 and a local bank executive based in Henderson County at $1000 – that is your “bank” conspiracy? Wow, you should team up with Oliver Stone.

    And a trip down the Googles tell me that the Big Oil execs you list are to of the propane delivery companies in Henderson and the 3rd – an even mightier corporate giant – is “Triangle Stops” a chain of gas stations in Henderson and Brevard.

    You nailed him!

  28. nthatcher

    and since there is still nothing to back up your claims where you started above that miller was financed by the rnc (nada), then endoresed by the rnc (oops) then the ncgop (still oops) we are to be impressed by “was recruited by party officials last fall before he announced he wouldn’t run.”

    So some unnamed party officials thought he could be a strong contender. That equals your conspiracies above?

    Look, no outside money, no outside endorsements and the guy won over 2K more votes than the 2nd guy. Move on.

  29. otfwg

    No more money than the “student” who made several big donations to Eichenbaum. Didn’t know that students made big money like those terrible oil and bank companies. Wonder where the student got all of his money?

  30. eyepenny

    annica2 sounds like he/she wants to talk about the issues. avoid the semantics and get to the point. what is jeff miller’s platform on the fed, the irs, foreign policy, the constitution etc?

  31. @otfwg:

    I’ve found numerous instances like students, retired people or homemakers suddenly donating large amounts of money to campaigns when family members run for office, or when a member of their family is on the campaign staff or volunteers with a campaign.

    This happens with Democrats as well as Republicans. These donors have often never donated to a campaign, and often the amount donated adds up to nearly the federal limits on donating to campaigns by individuals. I’ve always thought of it as “soft laundering” of political funds to campaigns. There are over a dozen such cases who’ve donated to Shuler’s campaign.

    You can never really prove where the money comes from, so everyone just ignores it.

    I find it deliciously ironic, almost to the point worthy of parody, that annica2 objects to rich people donating large amounts of money to a campaign, yet her guy put $100k in his own race (not that there’s anything wrong with that). It seems an almost communist point of view, (very common with lefty libertarians) that people can’t donate to political campaigns if they work in certain sectors of the economy. Or, they say it is okay, but feel free to point out those donations as somehow being evil or part of some larger conspiracy that is not a conspiracy.

    Her “establishment donations vs individual donations” comment sounds almost like communist revolutionary rhetoric to me. Maybe she misinterpreted Dr Dan’s platform in support of Free Markets to mean that everything would be free and that evil corporations wouldn’t be making a profit if he were elected.

    And I won’t even mention the tendency of certain Republicans to spend more time attacking fellow Republicans (the party, the policies, and specific people) than they do the Democrats. Seems like they haven’t learned from Mumpower’s crushing defeat in 2008.

    If they hate Republicans so much, why do they run as Republicans? They should know that they’re only gonna get lip service or cosmetic policy statements from the winners of elections and a generation engaged in intraparty political warfare. I guess that is better than forming a third party that might actually achieve something useful.

    Fortunately, a lot of video was taken at political events this primary season, and we can start holding candidates accountable for what they have said they would do if elected, or what they would do if they lost (like support the winner).

  32. nthatcher

    eyepenny,

    annica2 in her first post in this thread was 100% about no-proof trash talk and I have simply been swatting away the baloney.

    as for the issues you raised “what is jeff miller’s platform on the fed, the irs, foreign policy, the constitution etc?” i haven’t looked at them in a long time but the ATPAC candidates surveys (which were a great service) had that stuff on them.

  33. otfwg

    To Thunder Pig:

    You ask why do they run as Republicans? Because right now they are not able to run as a third party and get elected without either running as a Dem or Rep. They disagree with the Dems regarding
    bigger government and more government control. They also are for following the Constitution and for free markets.
    Those are things that they do not agree with the Democrats on at all. But some other issue…… they are much like the Liberals.

  34. otfwg

    To nthatcher:

    Explain what you mean by ATPAC candidates surveys being a great service? What was determined by having those and what was the purpose?

  35. nthatcher

    otfwg,

    Simple, their questions were interesting and well thought out. I thought that they in turn got responses that were useful to those who chose to read them, including me.

    ATPAC used them as part of their candidate ranking process (Eichembaum was #1 out of six, obviously, Miller was #2); so I suppose that was their “purpose” but I shared the link with many voters for education purposed as they told me much more than the usual sound bite stuff.

  36. otfwg

    Apparently, Eichenbaum was referred to in November as the Tea Party candidate. This was not the preference for many who attended tea party events. When they started making statements condemning the other candidates…….. that was not only telling but totally inappropriate. Their behavior is much like those that they proclaim to speak out against. Voters can make their own decisions by hearing ALL of the candidates speak, and therefore,
    decide for themselves WHO they wish to support.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.