With more than 71 percent of Watauga County voters turning out to vote in the Nov. 3 federal, state and municipal elections, 32,2777 out of 45,164 registered voters’ voices were heard.
In Blowing Rock, several voices also were heard after the election. The Blowing Rocket spoke to several residents about their thoughts on one of the most divided election cycles in the nation’s history.
Blowing Rock Mayor Charlie Sellers is owner of The Blowing Rock.
“I’m glad it is over,” Sellers said. “It is one of those things we go through at least every four years in the presidential cycle. A lot of good people stepped up to run for office and serve the public’s interest and a lot of good people got elected.”
Chip Cash and his family have a residence on Green Hill Circle.
“We have lost touch with our neighbors,” Cash said. “Now, during an election cycle, we seem to communicate through yard signs. When this country first started, it was our neighbors running for office, for those positions of public service at every level of government. I guess that comes with the country getting bigger, geographically, and more populous, but when social media becomes the vehicle through which we communicate and listen to mere soundbites, without a lot of evidence or substantiation, then the democratic process that our country has known for so long has lost something.”
Charles Hardin is CEO of the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce.
“When both candidates (President Donald Trump and President-elect Joe Biden) receive more than 70 million votes and the results are, for all intents and purposes, pretty even, then it becomes just that much more important for the count to be validated as true and accurate,” Hardin said. “Otherwise, those on the losing side are left to feel disenfranchised. That is unacceptable. This was an election made unusual because of the pandemic and so many people wanting to vote by mail, and we have to recognize that each of those votes is just as valid as the ones where a citizen showed up in person. But we have to be doubly sure that it was all done properly. That said, I am very confident that the election process in Watauga County was all done fairly and accurately.”
Albert Yount is a member of the Blowing Rock Town Council.
“One thing I have learned over the years is that there are two things you don’t argue with for very long in our society — a jury decision or a vote of the people,” Yount said. “President (Donald) Trump and his campaign team have every right to contest the results and ask for a recount if they have legitimate concerns about how the election was conducted. That is part of our process and part of our checks and balances. But, I will add that in the 24 years I served on Catawba County’s Board of Elections, we had many requests for recounts and not one of them changed the result. In some cases, the candidate requesting the recount actually received fewer votes.”