North Carolina Republicans fell just short of reaching a supermajority in the N.C. General Assembly, according to unofficial Election Day results from the North Carolina State Board of Elections.
Since 2010, Republicans have kept a majority in both houses of the General Assembly, and since the 2020 elections they have held 69 out of 120 seats in the House and 28 out of 50 seats in the Senate.
On Tuesday, they reached 71 seats in the N.C. House to 49 seats by Democrats, and 30 of 50 N.C. Senate seats to the Democrats’ 20.
Republicans needed a net gain of three seats in the House and two seats in the Senate to reach a three-fifths majority in each and gain a supermajority in the General Assembly. They reached those two Senate seats but only saw a net gain of two seats in the House.
Late Tuesday night, the Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper tweeted, “we stopped a GOP supermajority tonight when North Carolinians voted for balance and progress. I’ll continue to work with this legislature to support a growing economy, more clean energy, better health care and strong public schools.”
A supermajority would have given Republicans the ability to override any veto from Gov. Cooper. In 2018 the party lost a supermajority that it had maintained since 2012, and has remained just below the three-fifths mark in both houses.
Christopher Cooper, Robert Lee Madison distinguished professor of political science and public affairs at Western Carolina University, previously told The Chronicle that a Republican supermajority would make the difference between a “state government passing very little, and the Republicans being able to pass essentially whatever they want,” Cooper said.
“North Carolina is a safe haven for abortion rights access,” said Mac McCorkle, Law School ’84 and professor of the practice in the Sanford School of Public Policy in a previous statement to The Chronicle. However, complete legislative control by state Republicans would have put this in jeopardy, according to McCorkle.
Key swing districts for the Senate were Districts 3, 7, 17, 18 and 19, according to The Raleigh News & Observer. Republicans won Districts 3 and 7, and Democrats won Districts 17, 18 and 19.
Swing districts for the House included Districts 9, 35 and 63. Republicans won District 9 and 63, and Democrats won District 35.
Duke students voting in North Carolina were eligible to vote in House District 30 and Senate District 22.
Incumbent Democrat Marcia Morey won reelection to the N.C. House in District 30. She defeated challengers Republican William Antico and Libertarian Guy Meilleur with 86.31% of the vote. Morey was first elected in 2017 and this will be her third term.
Incumbent Democrat Mike Woodard, Trinity ’81, won reelection to the N.C. Senate in District 22. He defeated challengers Republican Larry Coleman and Libertarian Ray Ubinger with 78.33% of the vote. Woodard was first elected in 2013 and this will be his sixth term.
Additionally, Michael C. Munger, professor and chair of political science at Duke, ran for N.C. Senate as the Libertarian candidate for District 13, and received 3.35% of the vote.
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Parker Harris is a Trinity senior and an editor at large of The Chronicle's 118th volume.