Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 11, 2016

Posts in "N.C.-2"

February 10, 2016

Redistricting Case Could Delay North Carolina’s Primary

UNITED STATES - JUNE 24: Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., speaks during a press conference outside the Capitol with members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and members from the House Kentucky Delegation on the "Ratepayer Protection Act" on Wednesday, June 24, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Ellmers faces a March 15 primary, but there’s now speculation that will be pushed back because of redistricting litigation in North Carolina. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

By moving up all its primaries from May to March 15, North Carolina thought it would be playing a more pivotal role in this year’s presidential election. But a recent federal court ruling invalidating two of the state’s congressional districts threatens to delay this year’s earlier-than-normal primary and upend elections in which early voting is already under way.

A three-judge panel ruled on Feb. 5 that the GOP-legislature relied too heavily on race in 2011 to draw the 1st and 12th Districts. The court gave the state until Feb. 19 to draw new districts, and on Tuesday, the same court denied a request from the state to stay its decision.

Full story

February 9, 2016

Club for Growth Goes on Air Ahead Of Ohio, North Carolina Primaries

Ellmers was one of the founders of Project GROW. (File Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Ellmers is a top target of the Club for Growth. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The conservative Club for Growth’s political action committee will begin running new ads Tuesday aiming to help candidates in the North Carolina and Ohio Republican primaries.

While an ad in North Carolina will try to tear down Rep. Renee Ellmers to boost the Club’s endorsed candidate, the group’s ad in Ohio will try to build up Warren Davidson in the 15-way race for the seat Rep. John A. Boehner held before he resigned in October, a spokesman for the group said.  Full story

January 13, 2016

Duncan Goes on Air in North Carolina Primary Against Ellmers

Ellmers will not run for Senate. (Bill Clark/Roll Call File Photo)

Ellmers is getting a challenge in the GOP primary. (Bill Clark/Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Jim Duncan has released his first TV ad in his primary campaign to unseat North Carolina 2nd District Rep. Renee Ellmers. Full story

January 12, 2016

Senate Conservatives Fund Makes First House Endorsements of 2016

Ellmers denied "completely false allegations" against her Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

SCF has backed one of Ellmers’ primary challengers. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Senate Conservatives Fund endorsed its first three House candidates of the cycle on Tuesday.

The SCF has traditionally backed conservative Senate candidates, but in 2013 the organization started playing in House races with its “House Conservatives Project.”

“These candidates are all principled conservative leaders who have strong grassroots support. We need them in the U.S. House to reinforce the efforts of our conservative allies,” SCF President Ken Cuccinelli said in a statement. “They will stand up to the big spenders in both parties and work to defend the principles of freedom that make our nation great. We are proud to support Jim Banks, Mary Thomas, and Jim Duncan,” he said.

  • Indiana’s 3rd District: State Sen. Jim Banks is running in a crowded GOP primary for the seat Rep. Marlin Stutzman is vacating to run for the Senate. Banks also has the backing of the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks and Tea Party Express.
  • Florida’s 2nd District: Mary Thomas, currently general counsel at the Department of Elder Affairs in Gov. Rick Scott’s administration, is trying to unseat Democratic Rep. Gwen Graham, who faces a daunting re-election due to redistricting.
  • North Carolina’s 2nd District: Jim Duncan, who chairs North Carolina’s Chatham County Republican Party, is running in the Republican primary to unseat three-term Rep. Renee Ellmers. The Club for Growth endorsed Duncan in December.

At the Senate level, SCF has backed Utah Sen. Mike Lee, Florida Rep. Ron DeSantis, running for the Senate seat currently held by Marco Rubio, and Stutzman.

Contact Pathé at simonepathe@rollcall.com and follow her on Twitter at @sfpathe.

Roll Call Race Ratings Map: Ratings for Every House and Senate Race in 2016

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January 11, 2016

Presidential Primary Calendar Could Help Congressional Challengers

Shelby has a massive war chest. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Facing primary foes the same day as the presidential nominating contest, Alabama’s Shelby is spending money on re-election, just to be sure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In more than a dozen states, House and Senate primary elections will happen on the same ballot with the presidential race — timing that could pose a challenge for incumbent candidates in intra-party battles.

Presidential candidates such as New York City real estate mogul Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz are hoping to lure new, anti-establishment voters to the polls, a change that would skew the kinds of voters candidates will face.  Full story

December 8, 2015

Club for Growth Endorses Renee Ellmers Challenger (Updated)

Ellmers faces at least three primary challengers. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ellmers faces at least three primary challengers. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 12:29 p.m. | In its first endorsement of a challenger to an incumbent this cycle, the Club for Growth on Tuesday backed Republican Jim Duncan against Rep. Renee Ellmers in North Carolina’s safe Republican 2nd District.

Although Ellmers faces at least three primary challengers, the Club concluded that Duncan, a retired businessman who chairs the Chatham County GOP, has the most viable campaign operation and the best shot at winning.

Full story

October 9, 2015

Renee Ellmers Says She’s Praying for Those Who ‘Bear False Witness’

Ellmers denied "completely false allegations" against her Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ellmers denied “completely false allegations” against her Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Besides House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, North Carolina Rep. Renee Ellmers may have had the roughest week in Washington.

Ellmers on Friday acknowledged rumors and reports of an improper relationship with McCarthy and thanked supporters for the “outpouring of support and prayers” she had received.

Full story

January 23, 2015

Renee Ellmers May Face Primary Challenge

renee ellmers

Ellmers is a Republican from North Carolina. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Renee Ellmers, the North Carolina Republican who led the charge to pull the House GOP’s 20-week abortion ban bill this week, could have a bruising primary from the conservative wing of her party in 2016.

Jim Duncan, the chairman of the Chatham County Republican Party, is mulling a bid against Ellmers, according to multiple GOP sources in the Tar Heel State.

Full story

October 20, 2014

Clay Aiken Returns to TV (Video)

clay aiken

Aiken released his first TV ad. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken, the Democratic nominee in North Carolina’s 2nd District, went up Monday with his first ad of the general election.

With two weeks to go, Aiken talks to camera in the 30-second spot, attacking Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers for keeping her paycheck during the government shut down, among other things.

Full story

July 15, 2014

Clay Aiken Bests Renee Ellmers in Second Quarter Fundraising (Updated)

Aiken is running for Congress as a Democrat. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 12:20 p.m. | “American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken announced raising $450,000 from April through June for his bid in North Carolina’s 2nd District — more than his Republican opponent, GOP Rep. Renee Ellmers.

The Democrat, who faces an uphill climb to defeat Ellmers and has not yet reported his second-quarter fundraising to the Federal Election Commission, did not release his cash-on-hand total as of June 30. But that haul is a sharp increase from what he raised in the first three months of the year. Aiken had just $74,000 in cash on hand as of April 16, a few weeks before the state’s May 6 primary.

At that point, Aiken was locked in a competitive Democratic primary with former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco, who died one week after the primary after falling outside his home.

Full story

May 13, 2014

Clay Aiken Will Officially Become Democratic Nominee in North Carolina

Clay Aiken

Aiken will be the Democratic nominee for North Carolina's 2nd District. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images File Photo)

“American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken is set to be certified as the Democratic nominee in North Carolina’s 2nd District, after the North Carolina State Board of Elections received the tally of all votes cast in last Tuesday’s primary.

As of May 6, Aiken led former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco by about 370 votes. After all of the votes were reported from the nine counties within the district on Tuesday, Aiken gained an additional 21 votes, leaving him with 40.86 percent to Crisco’s 39.49 percent.

That tally pushed Aiken over the 40 percent threshold needed to avoid a runoff, and out of the range possible to trigger a recount.

The news comes one day after Crisco, 71, died suddenly in his home in Asheboro after a fall.

Full story

May 12, 2014

Clay Aiken Primary Opponent Dies (Video)

Former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco, who was vying for the Democratic nomination in a North Carolina House race, died on Monday, an employee at his company, Asheboro Elastics Corporation, confirmed.

Local media reports stated that Crisco died from a fall at his home in Asheboro. He was pronounced dead when emergency responders arrived on the scene, according to the Asheboro Courier-Tribune. He was 71.

Full story

May 7, 2014

Clay Aiken’s Primary Fate May Be Unclear for Days

Clay Aiken

(Ethan Miller/Getty Images File Photo)

The Democratic House primary between “American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken and former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco remained too close to call following Tuesday’s primary.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Aiken leads Crisco by 372 votes, according to The Associated Press.

Crisco has yet to concede and he said in a statement Wednesday morning that the campaign will wait for a report from the State Board of Elections to determine the next steps in the contest.

Full story

May 6, 2014

Clay Aiken Holds Slim Lead With All Precincts In

Aiken is a Democrat from North Carolina. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken leads his Democratic primary opponent by just 372 votes Tuesday night in a North Carolina race for the House.

Aiken had a small advantage over former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco, 41 percent to 40 percent, with 100 percent of precincts reporting, according to The Associated Press, which had not declared a winner as of midnight.

A third Democrat, mental health counselor Toni Morris, garnered 20 percent, according to the AP.

Full story

6 Things to Watch in Tuesday’s Primaries

Tillis and his wife Susan knock on doors in an upscale Huntersville, N.C., neighborhood north of Charlotte, the evening before the primary election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Primary voters head to the polls Tuesday in North Carolina, Indiana and Ohio, marking the first contests in a long series of contentious Republican battles over the next month.

In North Carolina, state Speaker Thom Tillis, Dr. Greg Brannon, and Pastor Mark Harris are vying for the GOP nomination to challenge Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., in a marquee race that will help determine which party controls the Senate next year.

Further down the ballot, an American Idol runner-up hopes he’ll have better luck in a Tar Heel State House race and longtime Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., will try to avoid becoming the first incumbent to lose a primary this cycle. In Ohio, a spirited challenger — perhaps best known for parodying a Cialis commercial in his bid — will attempt to unseat Speaker John A. Boehner.

In North Carolina, the contests could drag out for months. Primaries for Senate, the 6th and 12th Districts might continue to a runoff on July 15 if no candidate receives at least 40 percent of the vote.

Here are six things to watch in those races and others on Tuesday: Full story

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