The Republican runoff race for Congressional District 13 was finalized Tuesday evening, with former federal prosecutor Brad Knott officially becoming the Republican nominee, likely securing his spot in Congress. Knott was facing a runoff with Republican Kelly Daughtry, but earlier this month Daughtry announced she was dropping out and endorsing him. However, her name did appear on Tuesday’s ballots because her decision came too late.

As of Tuesday evening the North Carolina State Board of Elections was reporting Knott with 90% of the vote.

“Now that the primary is behind us, we can focus on winning in November so that we can get to work on addressing serious problems facing our country with smart, conservative solutions,” Knott said in a statement released Tuesday evening. “Whether the open border, runaway spending, intrusive regulations from Washington, etc. – we need Conservatives from all across the country to stand strong with President Trump and deliver real solutions in Congress. I look forward to doing just that.”

The newly-drawn CD-13 district is considerably more Republican than the CD-13 that elected current Rep. Wiley Nickel in 2022. The new thirteenth district encircles Johnston County, a conservative leaning suburb of the capital city, and an electorate with whom a Trump endorsement resonates.

Fourteen Republican candidates filed for the March primary in CD-13, with Daughtry finishing first with 27% of the vote, not enough to avoid a runoff. Knott was second, claiming 18% of the March vote. Early in the primary, Knott and Daughtry worked to align themselves with Trump, but after Knott’s April endorsement from the former president, Daughtry bowed out. Knott also has the endorsement of Sen. Ted Budd, Rep. Dan Bishop, and Rep. Virginia Foxx.

He celebrated with a crowd of supporters gathered Tuesday evening in north Raleigh. Knott will face Democrat Frank Pierce in the November election for Congress.

In the state’s 6th Congressional District, a similar dynamic was at play earlier in the primary race; a Trump endorsement of Republican Addison McDowell pushed him over the top in the March primary. Former congressman and 2022 senate primary candidate Mark Walker was facing McDowell, but withdrew to take a job leading the Trump campaign’s outreach for faith and minority communities. McDowell has no Democrat opponent in November.

Early in the primary, Knott’s campaign was targeted by ads featuring AI-altered photos. In both altered photos, Knott is depicted as friendly with President Biden. In the original photos, Knott is actually pictured with law enforcement officials.

“I recently resigned as a federal prosecutor to run for Congress in the 13th Congressional District in North Carolina. While working in law enforcement, I became familiar with issues important to every North Carolinian, and I look forward to discussing these issues in this campaign,” according to Knott’s website. “I grew up in Raleigh. My parents grew up in small towns, Wilson and Knightdale. My grandfather, now 97 years old, fought in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II. My parents taught Bible Study, and now, so do I. My wife, Joanna, and I have been blessed with two daughters.”

Knott attended Wake Forest University and worked as a clerk for state Supreme Court Justice Paul Newby. His platform issues include securing the border, solidarity with Israel, supporting law enforcement, protecting the unborn, school choice, first and second amendment rights, and inflation. 

“Now, it is all critically important that Republicans unify and work to get Donald Trump re-elected as President, Mark Robinson elected as Governor, and Dan Bishop as Attorney General,” Knott said

The North Carolina State Board of Election will begin mailing absentee ballots on September 6, and they must be returned by 7:30 pm on Election Day, November 5, 2024. In-person early voting slated to start October 11 and run through November 2, 2024.