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Phil Berger Jr. May Run For NC Supreme Court In 2020

Phil Berger Jr.

Phil Berger Jr., the son of North Carolina Senate leader Phil Berger, said on Facebook Monday morning that he plans to run for a seat on the state Supreme Court in 2020.

Berger was elected to the North Carolina Court of Appeals in 2016. In his post, Berger said it’s important to have a “conservative justice on the Supreme Court who is dedicated to the Constitution and the people of this state.”

His announcement comes as the state’s highest court could move more to the left. Chief Justice Mark Martin – one of two Republicans on the court — announced recently he was stepping down to become dean of the law school at Regent University in Virginia.

The other Republican on the court Paul Newby has expressed an interest in assuming the role of chief justice. If approved by Gov. Roy Cooper, that vacates Newby's seat, leaving it open for the 2020 election. 

Related Content: Democrats Pick Up Seats On NC Supreme Court, Appeals Court

Berger said Martin’s retirement will create a “noticeable void” on the court.

In November, Democrat Anita Earls defeated Republican incumbent Barbara Jackson to win a seat on the state’s highest court.

Go behind the headlines with WFAE political reporter Steve Harrison in his weekly newsletter "Inside Politics." Subscribe here.

Steve Harrison is WFAE's politics and government reporter. Prior to joining WFAE, Steve worked at the Charlotte Observer, where he started on the business desk, then covered politics extensively as the Observer’s lead city government reporter. Steve also spent 10 years with the Miami Herald. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, the Sporting News and Sports Illustrated.