The NCGA passed a bill Thursday evening outlining the way forward for the Congressional primaries scheduled for March 15th.
This is what will take place in the event the U.S. Supreme Court does not intervene to keep the old districts. With conservative Justice Antonin Scalia's death this past weekend, the prospect of help from the Supremes is more unlikely. If the Court deadlocks at 4-4, the lower court decision stands and new districts will have to be implemented.
NC98 Rep John Bradford put this out on Facebook Thursday evening - providing more details on how this will fall out.
So, over the next few weeks expect a lot of jockeying around who will file for Congress when the new filing period opens the day after the rest of the primaries occur.
In the new NC12, it would seem unlikely that current Rep Alma Adams from Greensboro would file on the Democrat side. With Charlotteans Rodney Moore and Malcolm Graham both already indicating they will run according to the Charlotte Observer, Adams would have a very hard time winning.
On the Republican side it will be hard to find serious candidates with a real chance. That's because the new NC12 tilts heavily Democratic - even more so in presidential election years - just like the old NC12. Data on the new districts posted at ncleg.net shows a likely 2-1 split favoring Democrats. Having chatted yesterday with a representstive close to one possible candidate, this is a real issue.
Two Charlotte area Republicans who filed in the old NC12 will likely still be runnng though - Ryan Duffie and Leon Threatt.
Most of the likely other Republican candidates in Mecklenburg County are already committed to legislative races anyway. Since these are unaffected by this Congresssional redistricting issue it would seem unlikely that any of them would throw away a good opportunity at the state level for a risky opportunity at the federal level.
One of the other changes implemented in the bill passed on Thursday is the removal of the possibility of a second primary. In North Carolina if a winning candidate gets less than 40% in the first primary due to there being several candidates in the race, a second primary is triggered between the top two vote getters. Removing that provision gives a very strong advantage to incumbents across the state because they now do not have to even get a majority to win. Since incumbents have higher name recognition, removing the possibility of a 2nd primary, gives their campaigns a big boost.
So how did our local Republicans in the NCGA vote on all this?
Both Charles Jeter and John Bradford voted for the House Primary Bill. On the Senate side Jeff Tarte voted for the new districts. Expect all of them to support these bills again when the head to the opposite chambers today.
Update: Well, apparently the prediction about Alma Adams not running in the 12th was incorrect! The Observer is reporting that she is IN! We sometimes forget that common sense goes out the window with politicians trying to stay in office