Weatherman, Boliek advance in Republican runoffs

The final two candidates for North Carolina’s Council of State have been chosen by voters after a May 14 runoff election that saw very light turnout — even by runoff standards. 

Balancing act: Robinson, Stein offer competing visions of the future in North Carolina

They couldn’t be more different. But it’s not about race, religion or party affiliation. 

Attorney General Josh Stein, a Democrat, and Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson, a Republican, present strikingly different views not only on their priorities if elected governor but also on the 30,000-foot view of what North Carolina is and will be. 

Republican runoff elections nearing

The Primary Election season isn’t quite over in North Carolina, as several races didn’t meet the 30% vote threshold to deliver outright wins to top finishers. In The Smoky Mountain News coverage area across Western North Carolina, voters have two Republican runoffs to watch — Hal Weatherman and Jim O’Neill for the lieutenant governor position currently held by Republican Mark Robinson, and Jack Clark and Dave Boliek for the state auditor position currently held by Democrat Jessica Holmes, who was appointed by Gov. Roy Cooper after fellow Democrat Beth Wood resigned in 2023. 

New commissioner for Macon

The Macon County Commission will see one new member seated in December after Barry Breeden beat incumbent Paul Higdon to represent district three. 

Time to abolish Electoral College

To the Editor:

In this country we don’t vote for a president. There is an intermediary called an elector whom we vote for when we vote for a presidential candidate. This might seem like a technicality, but it’s not.

District Court judge one step closer to moving up to Superior Court

Attorneys in Western North Carolina now know who will likely hold the farthest west superior court seat. 

Jackson County appoints new board of elections director

The Jackson County Board of Elections announced the appointment of Amanda Allen as the new director of elections effective Feb. 26. The vote to appoint Allen was a unanimous decision of the Board. 

Electoral College’s value is underestimated

In this election year of 2024 I want to discuss two controversial topics: the Electoral College and two-senators-per-state rule. 

Filling the vacancy: Unique process plays out to replace retiring Superior Court judge

When Superior Court Judge William Coward announced his retirement late last year, it caught many in the Western North Carolina legal community off guard and set in motion a process with little precedent.

Two Republicans vie for new district court seat

For the first time in almost two decades, Western North Carolina is getting a new district court judge, and with no one from any other parties running the contest will be decided by the March 5 Republican Primary. 

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