Local News

Ballenger Takes 10th District; Taylor Keeps Seat In 11th

Posted November 5, 2002 9:38 a.m. EST

— Rep. Cass Ballenger had little trouble reclaiming his seat in the 10th District on Tuesday, in spite of questions raised by his challenger over his voting record on trade issues.

With 60 percent of the precincts reporting, the Hickory Republican had 52,798 votes, or 62 percent.

Democratic challenger Ron Daugherty had 29,939 votes, or 35 percent, according to unofficial returns.

Libertarian Christopher Hill had 2,434 votes, or three percent.

In the 11h District, Republican Congressman Charles Taylor kept his seat after winning a seventh term in a rematch with his opponent from the last election.

With 83 percent of the precincts reporting, Taylor had 55 percent. Democratic rival Sam Neill had 43 percent in the unofficial returns.

Libertarian Eric Henry of Flat Rock earned two percent.

Observers called it a gentler rematch of the 2000 race to represent western North Carolina.

Ballenger, the 10th District congressman since 1986, faced a tough race from Daugherty, a mill owner from Morganton.

The test for Ballenger, a plastic packaging company owner, also came as Democrats squeezed Republicans out of his district during the latest round of redistricting - giving the GOP only a slight lead in voter registration.