Dare County voters will have lots of choices to make this election year, and not just one time. Numerous contests are on the ballot for both primary and general election races, from municipal to federal offices, and races with competition outnumber those with no opposition.
Candidate filing closed Friday, Feb. 28, at noon.
Local voters this year will go to polls on the May 6 Primary Election to cast ballots for the Republican, Democratic, and Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate, the Republican candidate for U.S. House of Representatives, the Democratic candidate for the N.C. State Senate, and the Republican candidate for the N.C. House of Representatives.
U.S. Rep. Walter Jones, is being challenged in the primary by two other Republicans.
In races closer to home, the primary ballot has contests for the Democratic candidate for District Attorney, the Democratic candidate for Dare County Superior Court Clerk, the Republican candidate for the Dare County Board of Commissioners District 1, and the Democratic candidate for Dare County Sheriff.
Although the U.S. Senate race, with eight Republicans vying for a chance to win a place on the ballot against incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan – who has two primary opponents – is the high stakes battle that has drawn the most attention, Dare has its own consequential primary contests.
It’s been a long time since there was even an opponent for District Attorney, a post held for years by Democrat Frank Parrish, who died suddenly last year. Now District Attorney Andy Womble, a Republican, will be facing off against one of two Democrats, either veteran prosecutor Nancy Lamb or newcomer Kathryn Fagan.
The 1st Judicial District encompasses all of Dare, Gates, Pasquotank, Camden, Currituck, Perquimans, and Chowan counties.
Unusually robust challenges are also taking place in Dare’s Superior Court Clerk and Sheriff’s Office races, which in past elections have often had no opposition on the ballot.
Incumbent Sheriff Doug Doughtie, a Republican who ousted Democrat Rodney Midgett last term, will be running against Democrat Christopher Rusk or Democrat Terry Ballance, both experienced police officers who are competing in May for the Democratic ticket.
And two experienced legal figures in Dare County, former prosecutor Chrissy Simmons and magistrate Mark Hodges, are vying for the Democratic ticket for Superior Court Clerk to face off against incumbent clerk Dean Tolson, a Republican who replaced recently retired Merlee Austin.
The Dare County Board of Commissioners has a primary contest in District 1 between Republicans John Booth and Margarette Umphlett, with the winner running against incumbent Democrat Virginia Tillett.
The Nov. 4 general election will also include show-downs for two seats on the Dare County Board of Commissioners: at-large, with incumbent Republican Jack Shea defending his seat against Democratic challenger Bobby Culpepper, and in District 1, Republican Wally Overman will go head-to-head with Democrat Sandy Semans Ross to fill the late Richard Johnson’s unexpired term. Overman was appointed to the seat last year by the Republican Party until this year’s election. Democratic incumbent Max Dutton is running unopposed for District 2.
In the Board of Education election, Charlotte White and Nancy Griffin are running for a seat in District 1, Joe Tauber, Richard Chance and Penelope Carroll are competing for a seat in District 2, and Margaret Lawler and Melissa Wallace are running in District 3.
And to top off this year’s unusually rivalrous election, there are also six competitive judge races on the ballot.
In Hyde County, voters will be electing a Clerk of Court, Registrar of Deeds, Sheriff, three commissioners, and three school board members, including one to fill the Ocracoke seat.
Candidates are unopposed in all races except that of county sheriff. There two Democrats are facing off in the primary.
Also, all of the candidates, except for Republican Benjamin Simmons III, who is running for Fairfield commissioner, are Democrats.
No candidates have filed for the Ocracoke school board seat.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Click here to see the entire Dare County ballot for the 2014 primary.
Click here to see the entire Hyde County ballot for the 2014 primary.