Gunnin Prevails in District 2 Commission Runoff
The former fire chief will become the second new face on the Board of Commissioners.
Tonight's results have not been certified. But with all 11 precincts reporting, Gunnin unofficially edged out Hubbard, 1,107 to 828.
"It's been a lot of work up until this point," said Gunnin, who opted to watch the returns at a friend's house. "Now, the real work begins of making a difference and doing what the people want me to do."
Supporters hugged Hubbard, who watched the returns from Shane's Rib Shack in Hickory Flat. He said he was proud of his eight years on the BOC.
"We just couldn't get our people out," he said. "His people were motivated to get out and I was trying to maintain the status quo. We had a good thing going. We'd been controlling the taxes. Still controlling the growth. And that doesn't generate any enthusiasm. And you add to that the Bobo situation that I stepped into as a brand new commissioner and I was the only target.
"I think the big thing is in a runoff, the person with the most votes is the underdog because so many supporters think, 'Oh, he won by a big margin. I don't have to vote.' "
Tonight's turnout of 1,935 was low compared to the July 31 primary when there were 9,504 votes in the District 2 race.
"I knew it was going to be a low turnout," Cherokee elections supervisor Janet Munda said before the polls closed at 7.
A little more than 100 people took advantage of early voting last week, she said.
And as of 3 p.m. today, Munda said only 923 people had gone to the polls.
Gunnin will become the second new face on the commission dais. Newcomer Brian Poole won the District 3 seat currently occupied by outgoing Commissioner Karen Bosch, who announced in May that she would not seek re-election.