On Monday, news broke that state House Rep. Erin Pare, R-Wake, is weighing a run for Congress. Pare is currently the only Republican lawmaker who represents part of Wake County.
Paré is a local business owner, military spouse, and mother of two school-aged children. She was first elected in 2020 in one of the closest N.C. House races, winning by 3.27 percent, or 2,294 votes. She beat current state senator Sydney Batch, D-Wake. In 2022, Paré won re-election by nearly 8 percent.
In her second term, Paré was appointed as one of the Chairs of the House Health Committee and one of the Vice Chairs of the House Energy and Public Utilities Committees.
Paré is waiting on a number of factors to inform her decision. This includes several personal matters, such as her two kids being in school, and waiting to see what Congressional district lines look like after redistricting occurs in the fall.
Following controversy about whether or not the Wake County Board of Commissioners should be elected county-wide rather than by their own districts, Paré worked out a deal with them. Paré introduced a bill to keep the elections partisan but make the commissioners elected by their districts.
The General Assembly will be redrawing the Congressional District lines after the Democratic (at the time) Supreme Court chose the districts for the 2020 election.
Here is a congressional map legislators drew in 2021 before the Democratic N.C. Supreme court ordered a redraw:
Under this map, Paré may consider a run for the 7th congressional district.
Two Republican candidates who lost in the 2022 election, Bo Hines in the general election and Devan Barbour in the primary election, have already said they are running again.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Wiley Nickel is the incumbent for U.S. Congressional District 13. Nickel does not live in the district, so drawing him out of the district may not affect his candidacy for the 2024 election. However, if the closest district becomes Republican-leaning, Nickel may reconsider.
Josh McConkey, M.D., who is a US Air Force Reserve Colonel and physician and lives in Apex, has also declared candidacy for the Republican primary.