In a midterm expected to produce big gains for the GOP nationally, Republicans down ballot in Charlotte mostly came up short on election night Nov. 8.
Winning an election as a Republican in Mecklenburg County is a tall order, with registered Democrats outnumbering Republicans by a wide margin.
For the congressional races comprising Mecklenburg County in Districts 12 and 14, Democratic Congresswoman Alma Adams and state Sen. Jeff Jackson each won comfortably over their Republican challengers.
NC-14 Republican candidate Pat Harrigan’s campaign manager, Brandon Craft, told CJ that he was proud of the effort put forth by the campaign.
“We campaigned hard and put ourselves in a great position going into election night,” said Craft.
In a written statement posted to his campaign Facebook page, Harrigan expressed gratitude toward Jackson as a formidable opponent and also thanked his supporters, family, and campaign team.
On the General Assembly side, NC House District 98 Rep. John Bradford III was able to fend off a challenge from Democrat former House Rep. Christy Clark, who previously held the same seat from 2019-2021.
“I am excited to have won re-election to my fourth term in the NC House of Representatives and honored to serve the good folks of District 98,” Bradford said in a statement posted to his Facebook page.
A notable local judicial race that had not been called as of Tuesday is the NC Superior Court race for District 26B between Republican candidate Judge Matt Osman and Democrat candidate Judge Kimberly Best, an appointee by Gov. Roy Cooper. As of Tuesday, the race is still too close to call, with Osman receiving 25,778 votes to Best’s 25,361. Results of the contest will not be finalized until Monday, Nov. 14, when the Board of Elections will meet in order to finish counting absentee votes by mail.
In the County Commission races, Democrats held on to all nine seats with Pat Cotham, Leigh Altman and Arthur Griffin Jr. winning the at-large contest. Democrats Elaine Powell, Vilma Leake, George Dunlap, Mark Jerrell, Laura Meier, and Susan Rodriguez-McDowell rounded out the other victories on the Commission.
More than 200,000 people in Mecklenburg County voted early, which was lower than the 2018 early vote tally, and a much lower number than the votes cast in 2020 according to the Charlotte Observer and their coverage of the race.
In spite of Tuesday’s results, Republicans in Mecklenburg remain motivated to help their candidates succeed. Mecklenburg County Republican Party Chair Sarah Reidy-Jones told CJ she was proud of the effort Republicans put forth this election cycle.
“Mecklenburg County is always looking forward to providing a stronger conservative voice in Raleigh while breaking Gov. Cooper’s veto power,” she said. “We’ve had our strongest ground game in history for voter contact and we are hearing from local voters that are ready for balance in our local government and to help contribute to statewide wins. Our voters know it’s a very tough blue county but they never give up on reaching out to voters for a message of balance and sanity from our elected officials.”