That was not our first rodeo. Won't be our last, either. We know the taste of arena-floor dirt. Improves your perspective and adds nutriments that are otherwise rare to the diet. You know the old saying: What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
2016 won't be the same for either party. Turn-out for Democrats and the unaffiliated is bound to be much stronger, even if all the voter suppression practiced by our General Assembly and The Guv stands up in court.
Locally, progressives held their own and even improved their situation. Sheriff Hagaman buried Randy Townsend, despite an early voting site in Deep Gap generously provided by our partisan Board of Elections.
It's steady-state on the county's Board of Commissioners, two Democrats and three Republicans. But at least the Nathan Miller Era will be over come the first of December. He has no more public office to abuse the power of. Republican Commissioner David Blust will have to run again in 2016 along with Republican Perry Yates. Without Miller pulling their strings, what will they do for direction? Will they put Democrat-turned-Republican Jimmy Hodges in as their Chair?
Democrats will now dominate the Watauga County Board of Education, first time in a long time. Republican Ron Henries, who got thrown under the party bus back in May because he voted not to ban books, is now being celebrated on the local conservative blog as one of their wins on Tuesday, as though we all don't remember how he was treated months ago. Bottomline: Wataugans have only one book-banner left on the school board, and that took a good deal of "single-shotting" by the conservatives.
NC House member Jonathan Jordan lost Watauga County, and state Senator Dan Soucek came within 226 votes of losing his home county too. If voters want more backwardness and bullshit, they'll certainly get it from Jordan and Soucek. But 2016 is coming.
For those without love for the North Carolina General Assembly -- which means those who've been paying attention to the extremist agenda in Raleigh -- the brightest spots on Tuesday night were in Buncombe and in Wake counties.
Tim Moffitt, the smug Buncombe County representative who engineered the seizing of Asheville's water system without compensation to the city, was defeated by Democrat Brian Turner. Moffitt thought he might be in line to succeed Thom Tillis as Speaker of the NC House. Oops.
Another Buncombe County Republican House member, freshman Nathan Ramsey, also lost to John Ager.
But Wake County was the real stand-out for a local slaughter of Republican office-holders. Another Republican NC House member, Tom Murry, used an election-day stunt to try to fool pro-education voters. The Murry campaign paid temp workers to hand out fake endorsement cards from the NC Association of Educators. The NCAE had actually endorsed Murry’s opponent, Gale Adcock. The fake endorsement cards were exposed on local television, and Adcock went on to beat the faker.
All four incumbent Republican county commissioners in Wake County, including Jesse Helms's nephew Paul Coble, were swept out of office by four Democrats.
Perhaps most significant of all races statewide, Democratic Supreme Court and Court of Appeals judges won all their races, except for that 19-candidate race for the Court of Appeals, where Republican John Tyson won because all Democrats did not unite behind one candidate.