RALEIGH (AP) — Democrats have taken a majority on the North Carolina Supreme Court for the first time in nearly 20 years.
Wake County Superior Court Judge Mike Morgan on Tuesday defeated Associate Justice Bob Edmunds, who was seeking a third term. While Supreme Court races are officially nonpartisan, Morgan’s election means four of the seven justices will be registered Democrats.
Morgan campaigned on his trial court experience and argued Edmunds had contributed to the Supreme Court’s politicization. The Republican majority recently upheld GOP laws creating redistricting boundaries and allowing taxpayer-funded scholarships for children to attend private schools.
Edmunds disagreed with Morgan about the court’s political tone and highlighted his bipartisan support from former chief justices and current sheriffs.
Outside groups spent millions on TV ads for the election.
On the Court of Appeals, incumbent Linda Stephens lost her bid for re-election to Phil Berger Jr. Incumbents Bob Hunter, Valerie Zachary and Richard Deitz held on to their seats. A fifth seat with no incumbent went to Hunter Murphy.
On the local level, William Jeffrey Moore was re-elected to his seat as District Court judge for District 16B, defeating challenger Timothy Peterkin with 61 percent of ballots cast. District Court Judge Judith Milsap Daniels was unopposed in her bid for re-election in the same district.