In his first run for political office, newcomer Ken Gunn upset incumbent Bob Call on Tuesday in the Berkeley County Council District 3 primary.
Gunn had 58 percent of the vote to Call’s 42 percent in unofficial results.
Gunn, 62, does not face opposition in November.
The race was a contentious one, with a brouhaha over whether the candidates would debate and both sides accusing the other of having campaign signs removed.
“I don’t know if it’s so much an upset as the people voting for the issues that I was running on,” Gunn said. “I tried numerous times to get Mr. Call to debate and he would not. I think the voters like to understand what the candidates stand for.”
Gunn said he ran a “grassroots campaign door-to-door.”
The seat is important because it could sway the balance on council, which often votes 4-4 on issues, with Supervisor Dan Davis casting the deciding vote.
Gunn, who plans to serve only one term, has said he disagrees with about “93 percent” of Call’s voting record.
“It will certainly take Mr. Call’s non-conservative vote out of play,” he said.
Gunn said he will spend his time between now and January, when he takes office, learning about county issues.
“Some of the issues I’m up to speed on, but there’s a lot of things I have to learn,” he said. “I’m going to take a few days off and then start doing my homework.”
Incumbents Phillip Farley (District 1) and Tim Callanan (District 2) also ran unopposed in the primary and face no one in the general election.