CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) - On Tuesday, Republican congressional candidate Mark Harris said he would not be running in the second race for the NC09 House seat, after a board declared the election be held again based on evidence of fraud.
For many people FOX 46 spoke with, Harris’ announcement didn't come as a surprise. But now, there is the question of who else could be on the primary ticket, which for now, is wide open.
Last week, Harris’s wife said "he's going to think about it,” but in a statement released Tuesday, he cited lingering medical issues-- namely the two strokes he says he suffered last month and a surgery he has next month-- as the reason why he’s dropping out.
This is now turning the speculation in the new District Nine election into overdrive.
Chris Turner, head of the Mecklenburg County Republican Party, says they’ve already been approached by potential candidates.
He wouldn't say who has approached him, but he says, despite all that's happened over the last few months with the District Nine race and the issues that showed up, they are ready for the new election.
“We want to have visibility, we want scrutiny, and we think with that, we will win the election,” Turner said.
In Harris’s announcement, he did suggest one man to run-- Union County Commissioner Stony Rushing.
FOX 46 has reached out to rushing for a comment. We have not yet heard back from him.
Meanwhile, Jane Whiley is with the Mecklenburg Democratic Party says they haven’t been approached by anyone wanting to challenge democrat Dan McCready, who won the first primary. So far, he remains the only one in the game on the left.
“I think voters are looking for someone with integrity, someone who cares about the country, someone who can cross party lines,” Whiley said.
The bigger question right now is who that will be, and that may not be answered until later this year.
MORE ON NC09:
- State Board of Elections votes to hold new election in NC District 9
- Elections head says ballots handled illegally in 9th congressional district
- Judge denies Mark Harris' petition; votes will not be certified in NC09
- McCready says voters are victims in NC09 election
- Democrats continue to fight petition to certify election results in NC09
MORE ON NC09 HEARING: