Nobody runs for office in small N.C. town
In the town of Tar Heel, North Carolina, no one has stepped up to run for mayor.
July 18th, 2011
04:41 PM ET

Nobody runs for office in small N.C. town

In the North Carolina town of Tar Heel, residents won’t have to worry about Big Government. It’s looking like No Government.

Nobody’s on the ballot for November elections, a county elections official told CNN Monday.

“The town had two weeks to file and no one stepped up to the plate,” said Cynthia Shaw, director of the Bladen County board of elections.

How did this happen?

“The deadline for anybody filing for Tar Heel was 12 noon on Friday,” she said, “and the board chose not to extend the filing period.”

Current Mayor Rick Martin is not running for re-election. “The mayor was in the process of moving out of the city, so he wasn’t going to file,” Shaw said.

The three-member town council won’t have anybody running on the ballot as well, leaving a void in the town's governing body.

"Another woman’s health wasn’t well, another didn’t have any interest. And another will step down. That left the three council positions open,” Shaw said.

So what's next for the town with a population of about 117?

The positions will all be write-ins come November. One sticking point for the election is that all the candidates have to live inside city limits. Only 87 people do, Shaw said.

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Filed under: North Carolina • Politics • U.S.
soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. shuggo

    So how 'bout that Casey Anthony, huh?

    July 20, 2011 at 5:40 am | Report abuse |
  2. Carpenter

    I just watched the second-to-last episode of The Office, season 7. For a time they have no manager, and Jim tells the camera that it works just fine. As luck would have it, people show up and do their job anyway. People sell paper anyway. Oh, the horrors of not having a boss telling them what to do.

    'But the powers that be always want someone in charge and call Jim. Jim, the intelligent and sensible guy, passes up on the job, believing that things will stay the way they are. He just wants to get down to actual work and be productive, and live his life with his family. The next phone call from upstairs is to Dwight, who loves power.

    But surely that doesn't happen in politics in real life.

    July 27, 2011 at 1:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. Tony Pivetta

    If you're going to Preserve the Disorder, you'll want to Preserve the Disorder over a good-sized city at least. Preserving the Disorder over 117 souls hardly seems worth the effort. Any achievement-oriented territorial monopolist of force will tell you that.

    July 27, 2011 at 6:43 am | Report abuse |
  4. Cal Elson

    Hey, if Congress and the President stepped down, and no one replaced them, we wouldn't have to worry about the debt ceiling anymore.

    July 27, 2011 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  5. MrLiberty

    As they say, "there's no government like NO GOVERNMENT." We should all be so lucky as to be free from our overlords. Peaceful self-structuring interactions among free people can preserve order and harmony in a manner far superior to government force. Let's hope this catches on and people begin to realize that the need for government is an idea promoted most extensively from those who benefit from that centralized monopoly on force.

    July 27, 2011 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
  6. MrLiberty

    I would love to win, just to resign immediately and set the town free.

    July 27, 2011 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Steve

    How will life go on without a mayor! Pray tell, one wouldn't know what to do with themselves without a dear leader!
    Its too bad this doesn't start a trend. We'd all be richer for it.

    July 27, 2011 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Don Duncan

    I non-resident could be major. It would not be legal but when has that ever stopped politicians? In Loving county, TX, the judge "serves" (holds office) with non-resident status illegally. Who will stop him? Not the state authorities. Not the residents. The sheriff of Loving reigns like a feudal king. He bares false witness, swears out false charges, and threatens would be residents with arrest if he believes they might challenge his reelection.

    July 27, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
  9. M

    I don't see why they even need an elected city council. They should just do what's done in similarly-sized New England towns.

    July 27, 2011 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  10. M

    That is: have a town meeting where all the citizens who care can come and vote on matters. Though, there may be some issues with NC law. But in general, a town that size doesn't need that kind of mayor-council system.

    July 27, 2011 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
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