Competition is coming to at least one of the judicial contests in Forsyth County next fall, with Tuesday’s filing of Republican Mike Silver for the District Court seat now held by Laurie Hutchins.
Democrat Whit Davis filed for the seat Monday, so a two-way contest next fall is certainly in the wings. Either Davis or Silver or both could have to face a primary, depending on whether anyone else files.
Hutchins is not running for reelection. Hutchins, elected in 1996 as a Republican, ran under her party label in 2000. From 2004 to 2016, judges ran without party labels.
There were no local filings at the Forsyth County Board of Elections Office on Tuesday (judges file in Raleigh), but there were filings for state and federal offices that will be on the county’s ballots.
The number of Democrats vying to face off with incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis swelled to five Tuesday with the filings of Cal Cunningham and Atul Goel of Raleigh and Erica D. Smith of Gaston. On Monday, Trevor M. Fuller of Charlotte and Steve Swenson of Bunnlevel filed to run in the contest.
Former Guilford County Commissioner Bruce Davis Sr., a Democrat, became the first candidate on Tuesday to file for the 6th Congressional District seat after a panel of state judges overseeing a redistricting dispute gave the go-ahead on Monday for the new district lines. Kathy Manning has announced that she will run as a Democrat in the district, but has not yet filed.
Davis, who lives in High Point, lost to Republican Ted Budd in 2016 in the contest to represent the 13th District, under the boundaries then in effect. Manning lost to Budd in 2018 in the contest for the 13th.
The newly drawn 6th District includes all of Guilford County and a section of Forsyth County that includes most of Winston-Salem and Kernersville and about half of Walkertown.
The rest of Forsyth County, including all of Clemmons, Lewisville, Tobaccoville, Bethania and Rural Hall, and the remaining parts of Winston-Salem, Kernersville and Walkertown, are in the newly drawn 10th District.
On Tuesday, the Republican incumbent in the 10th, U.S. Rep. Patrick McHenry of Denver, filed to run, as did a GOP challenger, David L. Johnson of Statesville.
As for Budd, he is running for reelection in the 13th, which includes Davie and Davidson counties.
The secretary of state’s race became a two-person contest for Republicans on Tuesday, with E.C. Sykes of Raleigh joining Chad Brown of Stanley, who filed Monday. Democratic incumbent Elaine Marshall filed Monday and is so far unopposed in the primary.
Monday’s filings included Republican Jim O’Neill, the Forsyth County district attorney, who filed to run for N.C. attorney general. It’s his second attempt to win the office. O’Neill lost to Buck Newton in the 2016 GOP primary, with Newton going on to lose narrowly to Democrat Josh Stein, the current attorney general.
The filing period ends at noon on Dec. 20.