Shuler tops Mumpower in congressional race

“This is fun, isn’t it”?

Such was the feeling of one Democratic voter Tuesday night, as Democratic incumbent Rep. Heath Shuler bested his Republican rival, Carl Mumpower, for the 11th District Congressional seat on a night in which Democrats racked up huge wins locally and nationally.

With 14 of 15 counties reporting late Tuesday, Shuler bested Mumpower with nearly 61 percent of the vote, compared to slightly more than 37 percent for Mumpower. Meanwhile, Libertarian candidate Keith Smith trailed far behind with just over 2 percent of the vote.

The carnage came early for Mumpower. Despite a maverick campaign that saw him fight Shuler, as well as his own party, on several key issues, Mumpower was resigned early in the evening to defeat, though he held no regrets about his unconventional campaign, in which he forsook party money and took not only Shuler but his party to task for what he saw as years of misrule.

Said Mumpower: “We said we were going to do it with a volunteer staff. No lobby money. No party money. Put principles first and not wear a mask — and we were true to all of that. So I’m proud of it. Nobody is going to see any tears of disappointment on my face. We did what we were in charge of and the rest of it is up to a higher authority, so I’m OK. I’m fine. I would not change a thing. … If I ever run again, I’d run the same way.”

While upward of 40 people packed Mumpower’s campaign headquarters to watch the returns, hundreds of the Democratic faithful packed a ballroom at the Crowne Plaza Resort to cheer on Shuler and a plethora of other Democratic candidates who would emerge victorious on a historic night in which the nation’s first African-American was elected president.

At slightly after 10 p.m., Shuler took to the microphone before the gathered throng, who roared their approval over his re-election when introduced by campaign spokesman Andrew Whalen.

“What an exciting day this is,” Shuler told the crowd. “I have to thank our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, for all the many blessings bestowed upon us,” he said as his wife and two young children stood by his side.

“And I’m so excited that I have a partner in the U.S. Senate in Kay Hagan,” added Shuler, referring to Hagan’s upset win over incumbent Republican Sen. Elizabeth Dole. “I can’t thank you enough. And remember: this is only a beginning of a long trek. Let’s continue to work every day. … Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

(Check out the Nov. 12 edition of Xpress for a full story on Shuler’s win).

— Hal L. Millard, staff writer


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

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.

One thought on “Shuler tops Mumpower in congressional race

  1. avlleobamagirl

    Shuler is a Republican in Democrat’s clothing-voted AGAINST stem-cell research, taking money from special interests. I voted for Mumpower for sticking to his principles.

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.