Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Mark Lucas disappointed in election outcome

Mark Lucas shows disappointment of returns

It was a close race within three points of incumbent Democrat Mayor David Bowers. Tuesday after the polls closed supporters for Mark Lucas gathered at the Quarter on Salem Avenue.

Everyone was jubilant and feeling good about the turnout in South Roanoke and the Lee-High precincts. Even as the numbers came dribbling in that had Bowers leading, campaign manager Chris Walters  and volunteer Adam Boitnott flipped through their iPad and iPhones scouring the returns secure in thinking the South Roanoke precincts would overtake Bowers.

They were optimistic that these precincts would heavily support Lucas and make up the deficit. It wasn’t to be … by 8:00 p.m. the writing was on the wall. Lucas missed the mark by 349 votes.

For Lucas it was an uphill battle. What kept him from reaching the mark was anyone’s guess. If he hadn’t taken off a week to go to Costa Rica or had worked harder in precincts outside his home turf. Roanoke voters are fickle.

Their reasons for voting for one person or another runs the gambit. There was the “anybody but Bowers” voter – the staunch Republican vote and the “let’s take a chance on someone else” voter.

Bowers had the money from Republican Peter Via and that could have put him over the top. It could have been the ground game including Organizing For America headed by activist Freeda Cathcart and Bowers’ campaign manager Joan Washburn astute in the ways of Roanoke voters with Sherman Lea Jr. helping with the Northwest youth vote.

It was for sure voter turnout. The heavily Democratic Peters Creek precinct in Northwest pulled in 200 voters in the last hour and a half.

Optimistic faces soon turned somber as Chris Walter announced a loss and Mark Lucas spoke to his supporters. Congressman Bob Goodlatte was there to lend his support.

Lucas was disappointed and said that it was a very tough race. When asked where he would go from here he said, “back to work.” He still wants to be involved in job creation and said he had met a lot of great people during his campaign.

He didn’t know if he would seek office again in the future.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Election 2012, Elections, Politics, Roanoke City Politics

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Comments (1)

Jack Mcguire

May 3rd, 2012 at 4:16 PM    

The guy did damn good getting this close..almost won it as an unknown. I think this wil be Bowers last term. I like him well enough..but he is ribbon more.

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