Last Saturday afternoon, Aug. 11, hundreds of people traveled to Jackson County to attend a rally which featured the North Carolina Council of State and other Democratic candidates. This rally was an historic happening, and was put together with Ben Utley of Macon County acting as the spark plug in getting the event organized. He traveled the 17 western counties of the state for weeks at his own expense, working with different groups of people, and especially with the different Democratic Women’s Clubs to bring this exciting event into existence. A similar event was held on the morning of the same day in Marion, N.C., for the counties surrounding that area.
At the event held at the Jackson County Library, something over 200 people attended, with Macon County being very well represented. Candidates who spoke and talked with the people included Linda Coleman who is running for Lt. Governor; Elaine Marshall who is running to return to the office of Secretary of State; Janet Cowell, seeking another term as State Treasurer; Beth Wood, incumbent State Auditor; and State School Superintendent, June Atkinson, who asked people to “Vote for June in November.” Also present were Court of Appeals Judges Linda McGee, Wanda Bryant, and Cressie Thigpen, asking to be remembered as the “fair” judges for North Carolina.
All the candidates were very friendly and approachable and so appreciated the opportunity to stump through Western North Carolina.
The candidates separately and collectively expressed their appreciation for the huge turnouts they had found on Saturday, and the audience gave them a rousing reception.
There was standing room only in the old court room, now modified into an auditorium for the Library. In my memory, which goes back quite a long way, I recall no such event which elicited so much enthusiasm and interest. The refreshments provided by the Jackson County Dems were greatly enjoyed, and overall “a good time was had by all.”
I very much hope that this enthusiasm will carry through November, and will result in a clean sweep to help restore some common sense to the political scene in North Carolina.
Sue Waldroop — Franklin, N.C.