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Mark Harris Fends Off Dan McCready In 9th District Race

Republican Mark Harris defeated Democrat Dan McCready in North Carolina's 9th congressional district.
Alex Olgin
Republican Mark Harris defeated Democrat Dan McCready in North Carolina's 9th congressional district.

Republican Mark Harris bested Democrat Dan McCready in a close race for the 9th Congressional district seat, coming down to less than 2,000 votes. 

Harris finished with 49.4 percent of the vote and 138, 338 votes, according to the unofficial tally. The Republican took Union and Bladen Counties. McCready garnered 48.7 percent of the vote and 136,478 votes, having won Mecklenburg, Anson, Richmond, Scotland, Robeson and Cumberland counties.

Harris, a Baptist pastor, had ousted Republican incumbent Robert Pittenger in the May primaries. In the months leading up to the general election, he ran a conservative campaign, allying himself closely with the White House. President Donald J. Trump came to Charlotte to campaign on behalf of the Republican candidate twice. Harris’ right-leaning campaign focused on issues such as repealing the Affordable Care Act, bolstering the Second Amendment, and securing the border, among others. 

McCready, a veteran and Charlotte businessman, has put up a well-funded fight. He outraised Harris by more than $3 million. The national Democratic Party also poured money into the 9th district race, hoping to flip the seat that has been held by Republicans since 1963. McCready ran a centrist campaign in an attempt to appeal to moderate voters.

Republicans have held off other Democratic upsets in North Carolina, fending off challenges in two other key congressional races. George Holding defeated Linda Coleman in the 2nd congressional district and Ted Budd bested Democrat Kathy Manning in the 13th district. 

Budd, a gun store owner and proud supporter of President Donald Trump, was able to hold off Manning’s deep-pocketed campaign with 51.8 percent of the vote. 

Manning, a Greensboro lawyer and small business owner, raised $3.5 million and spent $2.8 million on the campaign, far more than Budd who raised $2 million. She attacked Budd mercilessly for what her campaign described in ads as his vote to gut the Affordable Care Act. Manning made health care and Budd’s vote a central tenet of her campaign.

The 13th district includes Davidson and Davie counties and portions of Guilford, Iredell and Rowan counties.

Incumbent Democrats in North Carolina's congressional delegation held on to their seats. Alma Adams, David Price and G.K. Butterfield each won re-election Tuesday. 

Adams, who represents the 12th district in Mecklenburg County, said her victory and those of other Democrats was a “rebuke of Donald Trump’s agenda.” 

If Harris holds on, Republicans will still represent a 10-3 majority for North Carolina in Congress. Virginia Foxx, B. Mark Walker, David Rouzer, Richard Hudson, Patrick McHenry, and Mark Meadows all won re-election. Republican Walter B. Jones ran unopposed.