Multiple races develop for statewide offices

Published 9:44 am Thursday, March 1, 2012

RALEIGH – The race is officially under way in North Carolina.

Filing closed at 12 noon Wednesday and those wishing to seek office in North Carolina have been plentiful.

When North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue decided not to seek a second term in office, she left the field open for all wishing to seek the office. That has resulted in more than 13 candidates to file among the three major parties.

Only the Libertarian Party will not have a primary in the gubernatorial race as Barbara Howe of Oxford is the only candidate from that party. She has twice before been the party’s nominee, finishing third in statewide results in both 2000 and 2004.

On the Republican side, former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory is considered the early favorite. He is one of six to file for the Republican nomination. Others include businessman James Harney of Fayetteville, Scott Jones of Pleasant Garden, Denver businessman Jim Mahan, Charles Kenneth Moss of Randleman and lawyer and former judge Paul Wright of Dudley.

There are also six Democrats seeking the state’s top office. Lt. Governor Walter B. Dalton is seeking election as governor along with former Congressman Bob Etheridge. Also seeking the office is state legislator Bill Faison of Efland, Gary M. Dunn of Matthews, retired auditor Gardenia M. Henley of Winston Salem and 90-year-old doctor Bruce Blackmon.

There will also be multiple candidates for the office Dalton is vacating.

Two Democrats have filed for Lt. Governor. They include State Personnel Director Linda Coleman and state senator Eric Mansfield of Fayetteville.

The race for the Republican nomination will be even more populous as there are five candidates for the office. They include Wake County Commissioner Tony Gurley, architect Dan Forest of Raleigh, state representative Dale Folwell (District 74) of Winston-Salem, accountant Arthur Jason Rich of Garland and state representative (District 95) Grey Mills of Mooresville.

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper is the only candidate to file for that office. He will run unopposed in both the primary and the General Election.

State Auditor Beth Wood will not be opposed in the Democratic primary as she seeks to retain her post.

Five Republicans have filed to seek the office. They include Wake County Board of Education member Debra Goldman, former 2004 District 1 Congressman candidate Greg Dority of Washington, Joseph Hank DeBragga of Raleigh, former gubernatorial candidate and state senator Fern Shubert of Marshville and Rudy Wright of Hickory.

North Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture Steve Troxler will have opposition in the May primary. He is being opposed by Bill McManus of Davidson for the Republican nomination for the post. Troxler is a two-term incumbent.

The winner will face the person who survives the Democratic race for the office. Chatham County farmer Scott Bryant is seeking the office and will face Walter Smith of Yadkinville.

Incumbent North Carolina Commissioner of Insurance Wayne Goodwin will not be opposed in the Democratic primary. Three Republicans, however, have filed for the office. They include Mike Causey, a retired insurance executive and lobbyist from Greensboro, insurance agent James McCall of Mooresville and former state representative Richard Morgan.

Republican Commissioner of Labor Cherie Berry will also be unopposed in her party’s election. She has three Democrats, however, that are seeking the office. They include former Commissioner of Labor John C. Brooks of Raleigh, Marlowe Foster, the director of U.S. Public Affairs for Pfiezer and a registered lobbyist, and former Labor Commissioner candidate Ty Richardson.

Secretary of State will be a busy place on the Republican side. Four people have filed to face Democratic incumbent Elaine Marshall, who is running unopposed for her party’s nomination.

Among those seeking office are Chowan County Commissioner Ed Goodwin, business owner A.J. Daoud, UNC-Greensboro Professor Michael Beitler and former Wake County Commissioner Kenn Gardner.

Superintendent of Public Instruction June Atkinson will not face opposition in the Democratic Primary. Democratic Rep. Rick Glazier, who had announced a bid for the office, decided to instead seek reelection to his House seat.

On the Republican side, however, there are five candidates seeking the office. They include Wake County school board member John Tedesco, Union County Board of Education member David Scholl, former educator Richard Alexander, teacher Ray Ernest Martin and Mark Crawford of Montreat.

North Carolina State Treasurer Janet Cowell will face a primary challenge. She is being opposed by Ron Elmer of Cary in the Democratic primary. Two Republicans also filed for the office. They include radio personality Frank Roche of Cary and Steven L. Royal of Elkin.

The race for U.S. Congress will also be on the ballot and the First Congressional District will have a challenged race. Incumbent G.K. Butterfield is seeking reelection and will be opposed by Dan Whittacre, a retired Air Force Captain from Henderson.

The winner will be opposed by Republican candidate Peter Dilauro of Weldon and Libertarian candidate Darryl Holloman of Goldsboro.

In addition to those races, there will be one seat on the North Carolina Supreme Court and three on the Court of Appeals up for election.

For the position of Associate Justice on the North Carolina Supreme Court, incumbent Paul Martin Newby of Raleigh is being opposed by Court of Appeals Justice Sam J. Ervin IV of Morgantown.

Court of Appeals Judge Linda McGee of Raleigh is seeking reelection and will be challenged by David S. Robinson of Raleigh.  Also seeking reelection is Judge Wanda Bryant of Raleigh. She is being opposed by District Court Judge Marty McGee of Concord.

The final seat on the Court of Appeals will see current Judge Cressie Thigpen face Chris Dillon, who ran unsuccessfully for a seat on the Court in 2010.