Local candidates ready to gear up for Nov. 4 election

This week’s primary has set the wheels in motion as local candidates gear up for a November vote that will pick the new Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners and fill a number of south Charlotte seats in the N.C. General Assembly.

Democratic Party candidate Ella Scarborough took the most votes in the at-large county commission race in the Tuesday, May 6, primary. Current incumbents Pat Cotham and Trevor Fuller will join Scarborough, a former commissioner, on the November ballot after those three beat Elaine Powell and current incumbent Kim Michele Ratliff to represent the party in the general election. They’ll face Republican Party candidates Scott Carlisle and Emily Zuyus in the race for three open seats. The at-large seats are county-wide positions. Cotham and Carlisle live in the south Charlotte area.

Cotham, who has lived in south Charlotte since 1987, believes fixing the 2011 Mecklenburg County property tax revaluation is still a big issue for south Charlotte residents and one she expects to remain an issue in this year’s election. The revaluation review “is a continual thing that we have to be diligent about,” she said. “When I was chairman (of the commission), I got that headed in the right direction. We still need to keep pressure on to help individuals.”

Cotham also listed Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools issues and placing nurses in more schools as other topics local voters have recently expressed interest in to her.

South Charlotte’s two district representatives to the county commission did not face challengers in the primary, though SouthPark-area District 5 Commissioner Matthew Ridenhour will see a Democratic Party candidate in Art Cardenas on the ballot with him in November. Commissioner Bill James, in the Ballantyne-area District 6, will not see an opponent other than write-in candidates.

Long-standing N.C. Sen. Bob Rucho beat an in-party challenge from Matt Arnold on Tuesday night, taking 55.18 percent of the vote and likely retaining his seat in Raleigh. Rucho, who faced some backlash recently over comments he tweeted about the Affordable Care Act and who is a strong voice on the Charlotte Douglas International Airport authority debate, will not face a Democratic Party opponent other than possible write-in candidates.


The following are the main races south Charlotte voters will see on their ballot in November following this week’s primary election. Unless otherwise stated, only one person can win each race:


Mecklenburg County Commission District 5

• Art Cardenas (D)

• Matthew Ridenhour (R – incumbent)


Mecklenburg County Commission District 6

• Bill James (R – incumbent)

• No Democratic candidate filed to run


Mecklenburg County Commission At-Large (three seats)

• Pat Cotham (D – incumbent)

• Trevor Fuller (D – incumbent)

• Ella Scarborough (D)

• Scott Carlisle (R)

• Emily Zuyus (R)


N.C. Senate District 39

• Bob Rucho (R – incumbent)

• No Democratic candidate filed to run


N.C. House of Representatives District 88

• Margie Storch (D)

• Rob Bryan (R – incumbent)


N.C. House of Representatives District 104

• Eric Cable (L)

• Dan Bishop (R)

• No Democratic candidate filed to run


N.C. House of Representatives District 105

• Jacqueline Schaffer (R – incumbent)

• No Democratic candidate filed to run


U.S. Senate

• Kay Hagan (D – incumbent)

• Thom Tillis (R)


U.S. House of Representatives District 9

• Robert Pittenger (R – incumbent)

• No Democratic candidates filed to run


Clerk of Court

• Elisa Chinn Gary (D)

• Martha Efird (R)



• Irwin Carmichael (D)

• Chris Hailey (R)

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