Photo: Southwest Ward opponents Kevin Mundy (right) and Scott Andree Bowen campaign outside the Little Creek Community Center in Winston-Salem. (photo by Jordan Green)

Winston-Salem voters stuck to the familiar, supporting Mayor Allen Joines and a slate of incumbent council members by comfortable margins in a decisive local primary election tucked into the presidential nominating contest.

led opponent JoAnne Allen, 69.3 percent to 30.7 percent in final balloting,
cementing a sixth term. The popular mayor will face nominal Republican
opposition from Kris McCann in the November general election.

pledged during his campaign to continue efforts in increasing employment and reducing
poverty through a number of measures, including privately funded initiatives to
provide free community college and internships.

were really simple in our message: We laid it out really clearly what we want
to do, and I think we drew really measurable goals,” Joines said in an
interview at his campaign office on Liberty Street. “So, I think it gives me
motivation to structure projects and programs that address them because I know
the voters are going to be looking at how we’re doing. The poverty rate’s
either going up or down or staying the same.”

the city council election largely overshadowed by a volatile Democratic
presidential nominating contest playing out across 14 states, Joines held a
low-key celebration at his campaign office with his wife, children and campaign
manager. The entrance to the modest suite was marked only by a campaign sign
leaning against a dumpster at the back of a parking lot next to a UPS store. By
10 p.m., with less than half of precincts reporting, the mayor sent his family
members and campaign manager home, and turned out the lights.

Scippio, who was appointed to the East Ward seat in 2018, prevailed over three
formidable challengers in her first election, winning about 40 percent of the
vote. Kismet Loftin-Bell, a class-conscious consultant, and Phil Carter, a
scrappy community organizer, each drew about 22 percent of the vote, while
George Redd IV, an administrator with Habitat for Humanity of Forsyth County,
came away with about 17 percent.

God be the glory, and his will is being done,” said Scippio, a retired
corporate manager and nonprofit leader, while watching the results at the
Forsyth County Government Center. “I look forward to serving the people with
wisdom and compassion.”

Larson, who is finishing his first term, won a commanding share of the vote
against two challengers in the Democratic primary in the South Ward. Larson took
about half the vote, compared to about 30 percent by Carolyn Highsmith and
about 20 percent by Mackenzie Cates Allen.

the North Ward, DD Adams won 75.5 percent of the vote against challenger Eunice

in the Northeast and Southwest wards chose new representatives, thanks to the
retirement of Mayor Pro Tem Vivian Burke and Councilman Dan Besse’s decision to
run for state House.

Hilda Moore, a housing counselor,
cast her vote for Barbara Hanes Burke, the daughter-in-law of the current
representative, at the Carver High School polling place.

Burke, who currently serves on the
Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board, prevailed with 57.2 percent of the
vote. Morticia (Tee-Tee) Parmon, the daughter of the late state Sen. Earline
Parmon, won 21.6 percent of the vote, while Keith King, owner of Kingz Downtown
Market, took 21.2 percent.

“That was a tough one,” Moore said.
“I voted for Barbara. I’ve seen her out campaigning more than anyone else.”

In the Southwest Ward, Kevin Mundy,
a nonprofit leader poised to become the city’s first openly gay city council
member, bested Scott Andree Bowen, who directs the youth and food pantry
ministries at a local church. Mundy’s lopsided win gave him nearly twice Andree
Bowen’s vote total. The two greeted voters together outside the Little Creek
Community Center.

“Both of the candidates seem very
compassionate, and very friendly towards each other,” observed Kyle Vanderpoel,
a software developer who voted at the polling place.

Robert C. Clark, the only Republican
member of the council, walloped primary challenger George K. Ware, 84.0 percent
to 16.0 percent.

All of the Winston-Salem City
Council wards heavily lean towards one party or the other, making the primary a
crucial test. Barring an extraordinary partisan challenge in the general
election or a successful petition campaign by an independent candidate, all victorious
primary candidates will be seated on the next city council in December.

Forsyth County voters also supported
a quarter-cent sales tax to fund a local teacher pay supplement by a margin of
almost 20 points.

In other
local races, challenger Denise Hines edged out incumbent Renita Thompkins
Linville in the Forsyth County Clerk of Superior Court race, 50.7 percent to
49.3 percent.

And in the
multi-representative Forsyth County Commission District B race, the three
incumbents — Chairman David Plyler, Richard Linville and Gloria Whisenhunt
— easily defended their positions against newcomer Terri Mrazek. The three
Republican incumbents will face Democrats Christopher Smith, Gull Riaz and Eric
Weiss in the November general election.

voters in Winston-Salem experienced difficulty when they showed up to their
polling place, only to find that the ballots for their races were not available.

said the first 12 voters at the Fourteenth Street Recreation Center polling
place reported that they received Northeast Ward ballots even though they live
in the East Ward. She said all but one returned to the polling place and were
able to vote on the correct ballots. (The precinct is split between the East
and Northeast wards.)

Haney said she showed up when the poll opened at 6:30 a.m. and went home to get
dressed for work, and when she came back a poll greeter outside told her the
ballots were still not available. She said she was able to make it back from
work in Charlotte, and vote before the polls closed at 7:30 a.m.

Director Tim Tsujii characterized the matter as a “small hiccup.” He said the
poll workers couldn’t locate the East Ward ballots at first, but the confusion
only delayed voting by 10 minutes.

Later, at
about 4:30 p.m., a poll greeter reported to TCB
that the Miller Park Recreation Center in the Southwest Ward had run out of
Democratic ballots.

The Forsyth
County Board of Elections and State Board of Elections agreed to allow the
polling place to extend voting at the polling place from 7:30 p.m. to 8:10 p.m.

Todd Luck, a spokesperson for Forsyth County, said the extension was authorized “after there were long lines earlier in the day due to not having enough ballots of certain ballot styles for about 40 minutes at the precinct, during which numerous voters left.”

East Ward candidate Annette Scippio admonishes her grandson that he will need an umbrella before he begins his shift as a poll greeter outside the Fourteenth Street Rec Center polling place. (photo by Jordan Green)

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