Of the four Northern Neck counties, Westmoreland was the only one voting blue in Tuesday’s presidential and U.S. Senate races, following the statewide surge that sent Barack Obama back to the White House and elected former governor Tim Kaine to the senate.
The president bested Republican challenger Mitt Romney 50.6 percent to 47.85 percent to capture the state en route to a national victory. Locally, Romney carried all Northern Neck counties except for Westmoreland County where Obama won by .5 percent of the vote.
In the U.S. Senate Race, former governor and U.S. Senator George Allen (R) carried all of the Northern Neck counties except for Westmoreland where Kaine edged out 53.8 percent of the vote count. Kaine, also a former state governor, won Virginia 52.27 percent to Allen’s 47.54 percent. Kaine will take over the seat currently held by Jim Webb (D) who is retiring from the Senate.
Incumbent U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman (R) handily won the First District for another two-year term, besting Democratic challenger Adam Cook, of Fredericksburg, with 56.5 percent of the vote. Wittman, who calls the Northern Neck home, easily won all four counties. The closest local race was actually in Westmoreland County, his home county, where he still captured 56.6 percent of the vote total.
Northern Neck voters also supported both state referendums on this year’s ballot. The first amends the state constitution to require that eminent domain only exercised where property taken or damaged is for public use. It also defines “just compensation” for land seizures by the state. The second referendum, also a constitutional amendment, prohibits the General Assembly from delaying for more than a week the “veto session,” when it considers the bills returned to it by the Governor. Both referendums carried the state.
In addition to state and national contests, Westmoreland voters cast ballots in a handful of local elections. Mike Ham was elected mayor of Colonial Beach, winning 70.6 percent of the vote over write-in challengers Burkett Lyburn and Steven Kennedy. Colonial Beach voters also elected for Lloyd “Tommy” Edwards, Tim Curtin and Jim Chiarello to return to town council. They will be joined by Wanda Goforth, who was vying for one of three open seats.
There were also two different write-in contests for open school board seats in Colonial Beach and Westmoreland County.
On Thursday, Nov. 8, Kristen Hicks, general registrar, confirmed that Karen Jackson had won the write-in vote for the District 1 seat on the county school board. Four other candidates had formally announced they were seeking the seat. They included Scott Duprey, Mark Carpenter, Mark Garner and Frances Jenkins.
On Friday, Nov. 9, Hicks confirmed that three candidates had been named to the Colonial Beach School Board after no candidates’ name actually appeared on the ballot. According to documents provided by Hicks, Tim Trivett, Scott Foster and Michelle Payne were each elected by write-in in that contest.
Lancaster County: Romney, 53.1 percent – Obama, 44.5 percent
Northumberland County: Romney, 57 percent – Obama, 42.2 percent
Richmond County: Romney, 57.3 percent – Obama, 41.7 percent
Westmoreland County: Romney, 47.3 percent – Obama, 47.8 percent
Lancaster County: Allen, 52.8 percent – Kaine, 47.1 percent
Northumberland County: Allen, 56.4 percent – Kaine, 43.5 percent
Richmond County: Allen, 57.7 percent –Kaine, 42.1 percent
Westmoreland County: Allen, 46.1 percent – Kaine, 53.8 percent
Lancaster County: Wittman, 58.3 percent – Cook, 40.2 percent
Northumberland County: Wittman, 61.8 percent – Cook, 37.2
Richmond County: Wittman, 69.6 percent – Cook, 29.1 percent
Westmoreland County: Wittman, 56.6 percent – Cook, 41.7 percent