Hey Steve: If I'm not mistaken, you were a commissioner when Stokes Co. decided to be an "electing" county.
I was. It was the only policy battle of any importance I ever won. I was aided by a very, very reluctant Carol Bailey, who almost bailed out on me several times. That was in 1997, fresh on the heels of the 1994 Republican revolution and the socialists on the board still had to watch their step. We voted it in 4 to 1 with Eugene Lyons dissenting. In the ten years since then, it has saved Stokes County taxpayers millions of dollars. I would expect they will drop electing status since the socialists will believe they have a mandate. At this point, there is probably so much pressure from the state, I would be somewhat surprised if they stuck it out.
The program was based on the unheard-of principle that if you teach people a skill and put a time limit on how long they can feed at the public trough, they will stand up on their own two feet and live like free individuals instead of welfare slaves. As an added bonus, they get back their pride and self-worth. The leftists and power whores absolutely hated it. Reba Elliott swore there would be people starving to death on the streets of King. Gene Lyons tried to float some bizarre notion that welfare reform would cause more abortions. Don't ask, I never understood the reasoning behind that one.
Now that the GOP has flamed out on national and local levels, I expect it will be back to sucking in more slaves for the welfare plantation. And since the Bush Administration has provided us with ever more Mexican grist for the socialist mill, the Bolsheviks in Raleigh should find themselves in an ecstasy of Marxian euphoria.