While one election in Surry County is filled with hopefuls, other candidates will win by default in Tuesday’s primary election.
Candidates for positions ranging from school board to seats in the state legislature are running unopposed on Tuesday, and a few lucky candidates will also get free rides in the November general election.
East District Commissioner Van Tucker, Tucker’s eventual general election Democrat opponent Ronald Bowman and Register of Deeds Carolyn Comer will run unopposed in the primary.
Surry County Schools school board members Brian K. Moser and Clark Goings will also run unopposed in their bids for re-election.
Tucker, 60, of Shoals, and Bowman, 64, of Pilot Mountain may have free rides on Tuesday. However, the two will square off against one another in November’s general election.
Tucker, who was appointed to fill the vacant seat of former commissioner Paul Johnson after Johnson pleaded guilty to four felony charges in January, owns Senior Quality Care in Pilot Mountain and has farmed much of his life.
Johnson’s name will still appear on Tuesday’s ballot. However, the former commissioner is not eligible to hold elected office. Thus, no votes cast for Johnson will be counted.
Bowman is retired from a career in safety and security at Northern Hospital of Surry County.
Comer, 59, of Dobson, was first elected to her post in 2004 after working in the office for 14 years. The long-time Democrat office-holder will get another four-year term, as no Republican filed to run against her in the general election.
Comer said she was humbled to get another four years in the post and she will continue to hold her office to a high standard.
“We each take oaths before God pledging that we’ll follow the laws of our state and nation,” said Comer in an interview after filing for re-election. “We make no laws and set no policy, but rather, we just abide by our oaths. Doing so has allowed us to quietly and efficiently provide the level of service that our county’s citizens deserve.”
At a candidates forum in February Goings and Moser, like Comer, said they were looking forward to serving another term in their respective seats.
No fellow Republicans filed to run against N.C. Sen. Shirley Randleman and N.C. Rep. Sarah Stevens, who both represent Surry County in the General Assembly.
Likewise, their Democrat opponents are running unopposed in their respective primaries.
Randleman, 65, is a retired clerk of court from Wilkesboro. She was appointed to fill the seat after Sen. Don East, who died prior to the 2012 election, prevailed in his run for office. Randleman won a bid to be retained in 2014.
Randleman’s opponent in the November general election will be Michael Holleman, who also lives in Wilkesboro.
Stevens, 55, is a Mount Airy attorney and will enter her fifth two-year term in the N.C. House of Representatives if re-elected. Like Randleman, she will get a pass in Tuesday’s primary election but will face opposition in the general election.
Stevens’ opponent in November will be Vera Smith Reynolds, 67, of Mount Airy. Reynolds, who will officially gain the Democrat party’s nomination on Tuesday, is a retired educator and serves as president of the local NAACP chapter.
Polls are open on Tuesday from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.