meadoWs WIns bIg In runoff Bruce New
repubLIcan seTs sIghTs on 11Th dIsTrIcT seaT
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by Jake frankeL Mark Meadows routed vance Patterson in the July 17 Republican runoff for the 11th Congressional District. That sets the stage for a fall face-off against Democrat Hayden Rogers. Meadows collected 76 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results from the State Board of Elections. In the May 8 primary, the Cashiers realestate developer topped a crowded field that included seven other challengers, garnering 38 percent of the vote — just below the 40 percent threshold needed to avoid a runoff. Patterson finished second with 24 percent — about the same level of support he achieved in the runoff. The day after his defeat, Patterson released a statement congratulating Meadows and supporting him against his Democratic opponent. Rogers, a WNC native who lives in Brasstown, is incumbent Democratic Rep. Heath shuler’s former chief of staff. He jumped into the race in February, soon after
10 JULY 25 - JULY 31, 2012 • mountainx.com
Lucky kiss? Mark Meadows’ wife Debbie kissed and congratulated him soon after they learned the campaign was victorious in the runoff against Vance Patterson. Photos by Max Cooper his boss decided not to seek re-election, easily defeating his primary competition with 56 percent of the vote. (Asheville City Council member Cecil Bothwell finished second with 30 percent.) During last year’s redistricting, however, GOP leaders in Raleigh excluded most of Asheville from the 11th District, putting it on the short list for the most conservative political turf in the state. Many observers say the political goal was to siphon off enough Democrats to make the 11th District more easily winnable by Republicans while maintaining incumbent GOP Rep. Patrick McHenry's solid base in the 10th, where most of Asheville now resides. About 100 Meadows supporters gathered at the Hampton Inn in Fletcher for a barbecue-
flavored celebration, and many were hopeful about their candidate’s chances in November.
god on hIs sIde A jubilant mood prevailed as Meadows worked the hotel lobby, thanking campaign staff and volunteers. But he saved his biggest praise for another helper. "I want to give God the glory. I was OK with whatever the outcome was, because I knew he was in control and I wasn't," Meadows proclaimed to applause. "2012 will be a great year for this country, for the people of WNC, because we're going to fight and reclaim America the way that God intended to and the way our Founding Fathers knew that the Constitution would preserve."