Brooks Pierce Capital Dispatch: Updates from the NC General Assembly and Governor’s Office, March 11, 2022
Election Campaign is Underway
Now that candidate filing has ended and election maps are set after the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to review recently drawn congressional district maps, candidates are actively campaigning for various offices. This year’s ballot will include an open U.S. Senate seat given the retirement of Sen. Richard Burr, 14 U.S. House races, two state Supreme Court seats, four state Court of Appeals seats, and all 170 legislative seats. The primary election will be May 17 and the general election is Nov. 8.
The election could have a significant impact on political control in the state:
- U.S. Senate
Former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley is the likely Democratic nominee. Among those competing for the Republican nomination are former Gov. Pat McCrory, Congressman Ted Budd, and former Congressman Mark Walker.
- U.S. House
North Carolina gained a U.S. House seat after the 2020 census and now has 14 seats. Republicans currently hold an 8-5 majority in the state’s delegation. Incumbents seeking reelection are Republicans Greg Murphy, Virginia Foxx, David Rouzer, Richard Hudson, Dan Bishop, Patrick McHenry, and Madison Cawthorn, and Democrats Deborah Ross and Kathy Manning.
- Supreme Court
The two seats on the ballot are both held by Democrats, who have a 4-3 majority. One is an open seat with the retirement of Justice Robin Hudson and Justice Jim Ervin is seeking reelection to the other seat.
- Court of Appeals
Of the four seats on this year’s ballot, each party holds two seats with three incumbents (Republicans Donna Stroud and John Tyson and Democrat Darren Jackson) seeking reelection. The second Democratic seat is open since Judge Lucy Inman is running for the state Supreme Court.
- General Assembly
Republicans currently hold majorities in both houses (69-51 in the House and 28-22 in the Senate). To obtain “supermajority” status and thus be able to override gubernatorial vetoes if members vote by party, they would need to gain three seats in the House and two in the Senate.
General Assembly Meets
During a two-day session this week, legislators addressed a few matters. They passed a budget technical corrections bill (H 243), which made various adjustments to the budget law enacted in November 2021, and confirmed the nomination of Karen Kemerait to the North Carolina Utilities Commission. A Senate effort to override a gubernatorial veto of S 173, which would allow additional parental discretion over student masks at schools, was unsuccessful.
Legislators to Return in May for “Short” Session
After the May 17 primary, legislators will hold the even-numbered year “short” session (called this because it is usually shorter than the odd-numbered year session). The House is not expected to hold voting sessions before the short session although the Senate may vote on some gubernatorial nominations during that period.
During the short session, legislators are expected to make adjustments to the second year of the biennial budget law enacted in 2021 and may consider other matters such as sports betting, Medicaid expansion, and health care coverage. Legislative oversight and interim committees, which often recommend legislation, are expected to meet between now and May. This includes groups such as the Joint Legislative Committee on Access to Health Care and Medicaid Expansion.
For more information, contact a member of the Brooks Pierce Government Affairs Team.