Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Signs of More Trouble in the Watauga GOP

Names are emerging of who will be on the Republican ballot in Watauga County in 2010, and more particularly, of who will be on the Republican ballot without the Republican Party's/Virginia Foxx's blessing.

We hear that Mark Shook will not be running for sheriff again after all. There's an open question about whether the Republicans will field anybody against Democratic Sheriff Len Hagaman.

Former County Commissioner David Blust, who had wanted to run for Clerk of Superior Court (which provides a big salary), is apparently going to run instead for his old seat on the Watauga County Commission (which provides practically no salary).

But Blust evidently will have a primary. Former County Commissioner David Triplett may run for what was also his old seat, without the blessing of the local GOP. Which demands a little (ancient) history:

David Triplett had been a multiple-term County Commissioner back in the day, but he got crossways with the local GOP, which doesn't much tolerate anyone they can't control. They ran Linda Craig against him in the primary of 1994 and ousted him. (Craig was herself ousted in 1998 after one term, but that's another tale of woe.) Triplett sat out of electoral politics until 2006, when he ran again against John Cooper, who ended up winning. Cooper is not running for reelection.

So ... that District 4 seat on the Watauga County Commission mimics the turn-over in the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Dick Burr:
1990 David Triplett elected to 4-year term
1994 Triplett ousted by Linda Craig
1998 Craig ousted by Sue Sweeting
2002 Sweeting ousted by David Blust
2006 Blust quits to run for NC Senate (and loses); Cooper takes the seat
2010 Cooper vacates the seat and ??? takes it

The May Republican primary may get very interesting.

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