General Election votes finalized

Members of the Forsyth County Board of Elections finalized votes from the 2018 General Election on Friday, Nov. 16.

General Election votes finalized
November 29
01:00 2018

In comparison to 2016, when the Election Canvass lasted a few days, the canvass to finalize votes from the 2018 General Election went over without many issues this month.

The canvass in 2016 was prolonged after former Gov. Pat McCrory requested a recount after then Attorney General Roy Cooper led by less than 10,000 votes. The local Board of Elections was also held up by protests filed by Forsyth County GOP Vice Chair Linda Petrou,  claiming that two felons voted. The claims by Peatrou were later dismissed, along with four others.

Although this year the votes were finalized on Friday Nov. 16, the Forsyth County Board of Elections had to reconvene on Wednesday, Nov. 21, after seven provisional ballots were discovered by election workers.

According to BOE Director Tim Tsujii, the ballots that were discovered were incorrectly placed inside the envelope used for holding provisional ballots and the envelopes appeared to be empty.

“We double check everything so when these workers were going through, they felt these and they felt different. They looked inside and found the applications and they knew right then and there that there were additional provisional ballots,” said Tsujii. “It can happen, you know, poll worker error. They should’ve put the application in the front but these are things we can address in training. The main thing is that there is a process in place where they’re going to be found.”

The 2018 General Election wasn’t as exciting as in 2016, but there were a few surprises on Election Night. The biggest surprise came in the race for sheriff, in which Winston-Salem native, Democrat Bobby Kimbrough Jr. upset incumbent Republican Bill Schatzman, who was running for his fifth term.

The final tally shows Kimbrough, a retired agent with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), received 72,648 votes, which rounds to about 54 percent of the total vote compared to only 46 percent for Schatzman.

Democrats took majority control of the Board of Education as well. Democrats Deanna Kaplan, Andrea Bramer, Barbara Hanes Burke, and Malishai Woodbury will join incumbent and fellow Democrat Elisabeth Motsinger on the board along with incumbent Republicans Lida Calvert Hayes, Lori Goins Clark and Dana Caudill Jones. Republican Leah Crowley was elected to the board as well.

For the first time in recent history, all women will serve on the Board of Education.

In the race for U.S. House of Representatives District 5, the challenger, Winston-Salem City Council Member Denise “DD” Adams, lost by nearly 40,000 votes to longtime incumbent Virginia Foxx, according to statewide results but  here in Forsyth County, Adams received 56 percent of the total vote, more than 77,000 votes.

One of the most exciting races to watch on Election Night was the battle for District 75 of the N.C. House of Representatives. Throughout the night, results see-sawed back and forth in favor of Republican Donny Lambeth and Democrat Dan Besse, who is also a member of the Winston-Salem City Council.

In the end incumbent Lambeth came out on top earning 53 percent of the total votes compared to only 47 percent for Besse.

Although they didn’t officially throw their names in the running for the Democrats in 2020, both Adams and Besse suggested they would run again.

The 2018 City Bonds, $122 million worth of projects in five categories,including streets and sidewalks, parks and recreation, public safety facilities, economic development and housing, each passed with nearly 60 percent of the total vote.

It was a different story for the Forsyth County quarter-cent local sales and use tax increase. Nearly 70 percent of voters voted no on the tax increase, which was set to be used to pay for a new county jail, with part of the excess used to increase teacher supplements in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools.

Now that the voters have spoken, it is unclear how the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners plan to fund the jail and supplement increase.

As reported in the Nov. 22 issue of The Chronicle The BOE also sent the names of two voters to the District Attorney’s Office. it appears the voters aged 18 and 34 cast their ballots during the early voting period and voted again on Election Day. It is not clear what the DA will do with those two individuals.

For full results from the 2018 General Election visit

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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