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2018 Midterm Elections

Two years ago, a Smoky Mountain News analysis of precinct-level elections results painted a portrait of a red county getting redder — at least electorally. This year was almost as rosy for Haywood’s Republican voters, who saw their candidates return to the U.S. House and the N.C. Senate as well as swing the Haywood Commission from a 3-to-2 Democratic majority to a 4-to-1 Republican advantage. 
Results in the Haywood County Board of Commissioners race hit the county like a cannonball, with Republicans taking two of three seats — all previously held by Democrats — while also earning themselves a 4-to-1 majority on the first-ever Republican-controlled commission. 
Robust voter turnout and early voting enthusiasm made the difference in three Jackson County Board of Commissioners races, causing the board to flip from a Republican to a Democratic majority. 
Swain County voters have typically been adamantly opposed to any sort of tax hike, whether it’s a property tax or a sales tax, which is why many were pleasantly surprised to see a quarter-cent sales tax increase approved following the Nov. 6 election.
With the retirement of Democratic Commissioner Bill Upton, one commission seat was up for grabs, with two more being defended by their Democratic occupants, Commissioner Mike Sorrells and Commission Chairman Kirk Kirkpatrick.
Any notion of a red tide or blue wave ebbed quickly Nov. 6, as both Republicans and Democrats celebrated victories, mourned defeats, said goodbye to some incumbents, and hello to new ones.
The Jackson County Board of Commissioners will flip to a Democratic majority following a hotly contested election in which three of the five seats appeared on the ballot.
Jackson County Sheriff Chip Hall will keep his job for another four years following a decisive victory on Election Day.
Despite challengers’ loud cries for change in Macon County leadership, voters have given incumbents Ronnie Beale (Democrat) and Gary Shields (Republican) another four-year term on the board of commissioners.
Republican Robert Holland will serve a fifth term as Macon County sheriff after a clear victory Tuesday night.
With six candidates running for three seats on the Swain County Board of Commissioners, it was a close call Tuesday night as election results began to roll in.
Incumbent Republican Curtis Cochran has secured his fourth term as sheriff of Swain County after facing off against Democratic challenger Rocky Sampson. 
Third quarter fundraising reports submitted by candidates to the State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement last week show most Democratic challengers in Western North Carolina with substantial fundraising advantages over their Republican incumbent opponents.
Most years, voters head to the polls with a few candidates or a political party in mind, push some buttons, and go home. But this year’s ballot also contains six proposed amendments to the North Carolina Constitution.
The bad news is almost six million North Carolinians still hadn’t voted as of Monday, Oct. 29. The good news is more than a million had — 1.23 million, to be exact.
Asheville Republican Mark Meadows has now served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives — the last two as a powerful figure in the majority party, the most recent under unified Republican control of the presidency, the Senate and the House. 
Since 2012, Western North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District has been represented by Asheville Republican Rep. Mark Meadows, a Florida native who moved to the region in 1986. Meanwhile, Meadows has enjoyed great electoral success and become the standard-bearer for what remains of the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party nationwide.
Haywood County’s high-performing schools slipped a few notches in state rankings this year — from 11th the last two years to 14th this year, of 115 districts statewide — and although that’s not cause for alarm, school board members are focused on the challenge of returning to the top 10 percent again this year. 
The four westernmost counties in North Carolina can be described with three words — rugged, rural and Republican. 
Haywood County’s board of commissioners consists of five members, three of whom are up for election Nov. 6. All three of those seats are currently held by Democratic commissioners. One of them, Bill Upton, isn’t seeking re-election. 
The only two seats that aren’t up for election on Haywood County’s five-member board of commissioners this November are both held by Republicans. The other three are currently held by Democrats, and have attracted two Democratic incumbents as well as a third Dem candidate seeking to maintain that majority. 
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