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Sylva Progressives Watch Super Tuesday Primary Results

Lilly Knoepp
Local Democrats from Franklin, Bryson City and Sylva gathered together to watch the 2020 primary election results on Super Tuesday in Sylva.

In downtown Sylva about 20 Democrats gathered around 7pm to watch the primary election results roll in on NBC at the Lazy Hiker Taproom/Mad Batter. 


Many said that they weren’t too excited about the presidential election but were energized about local politics.


“I’m certainly not. I’ve been an Elizabeth Warren supporter and it feels like it’s getting decided before a lot of states have even voted,” says Sylva resident Betty Dishman, who is a fan of Moe Davis.


Davis(D) is running for U.S. House of Representatives for NC District 11. Other top Democratic candidates for the spot are Phillip Price, Michael O'Shea and Gina Collias. This has been one of the most contentious races since Represenative Mark Meadows (R) announced his retirement less than three months ago.


Garrett Lagan drove over from Swain County to watch the results with his friends. Lagan and his friend Colin Duffy both say that they have been volunteering for Price’s campaign.


“I am much more focused on winning the general than on my horse winning the primary,” says Lagan, adding that he likes Bernie.


Price came in third in the Democratic contest while Davis won with 47 percent of the vote.Gina Collias placed second. Republicans will have to go into a runoff election.


Organizer Nilofer Couture with Indivisible and Swing Left says that the main point of the watch party was to drum up voter turnout. 


“There are lots of people who have different candidates that they are supporting so we thought bringing them together, so that they could talk about them would be a great way to increase the visibility of the election,” says Couture, who is also a council member for the village of Forest Hills outside Cullowhee. “We want to make sure that people vote blue no matter who right now.” 


Jackson County had 33 percent turn out in the election. Meanwhile, Buncombe County had almost 42 percent turnout of eligible voters. 


By the end of the night, Vice President Joe Biden won the state followed by Senator Bernie Sanders, Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Senator Elizabeth Warren respectively. 


For the Democrats, all eyes remain firmly on November. 


Lilly Knoepp serves as BPR’s first fulltime reporter covering Western North Carolina. She is a native of Franklin, NC who returns to WNC after serving as the assistant editor of Women@Forbes and digital producer of the Forbes podcast network. She holds a master’s degree in international journalism from the City University of New York and earned a double major from UNC-Chapel Hill in religious studies and political science.
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