By Sam Walker of WOBX. Reprinted by permission.
A committee of Republicans from North Carolina’s First Senate District have unanimously selected state Rep. Bobby Hanig (R-Currituck) to move across the Legislative Building for at least the rest of this year.
Meeting at the 1767 Chowan County Courthouse on Thursday, a panel of 41 delegates from the 11 county districts recommended Hanig to the state Republican Party as the replacement for former Sen. Bob Steinburg (R-Chowan) after he stepped down at the end of July.
“I am grateful for the unanimous support from each county party member,” Hanig said in a statement. “I believe my record of fiscal management, advocating for students and families, and standing up to help families helped secure my recommendation.”
The senator-designate’s nomination will now be forwarded to Gov. Roy Cooper, who will make Hanig’s appointment official within the next seven days.
A Republican from Powells Point, Hanig has been in the N.C. House of Representatives since 2018. He was elevated last year to Deputy Majority Whip, a key leadership position.
“I am excited about the opportunity to continue to represent Northeastern North Carolina,” Hanig said. “I am focused on fighting inflation to help families who are struggling. I look forward to continuing my public service to a larger audience and continue to make northeastern North Carolina values a priority in the legislature.”
Hanig was unopposed in the May primary for the Republican nomination to the Third District Senate seat.
That district covers Bertie, Currituck, Camden, Gates, Halifax, Hertford, Martin and Warren counties.
Hanig will face Valerie Jordan, a Democrat from Warren County, in the November general election.
Earlier this week, Hanig filed a protest of Jordan’s residency, claiming she actually lives in Raleigh. A hearing on that challenge is scheduled for Tuesday in Currituck.
Once Hanig is sworn into the Senate, that will leave open his House seat representing Currituck, Dare, Hyde and Pamlico.
Paul O’Neal, a former Currituck County commissioner from Waterlily, is the likely candidate to serve out the remainder of the House term ending in January.
From last year’s redistricting, the northeast corner of the state has been split into three House districts ahead of the 2022 elections.
Ocracoke and Hyde County is in the new District 79, which also covers Beaufort, the rest of Dare, and Pamlico counties. Rep. Keith Kidwell (R-Beaufort) is the incumbent and is running unopposed in the November election.
Rep. Edward Goodwin (R-Chowan) is unopposed in the First District covering Currituck, Chowan, northern Dare (Kitty Hawk, Southern Shores and Duck), Perquimans, Tyrrell and Washington.
Rep. Howard Hunter (D-Hertford Co.) faces a challenge from Republican Bill Ward of Elizabeth City in the 5th district, which includes Camden, Pasquotank, Gates and Hertford counties.
While the legislature wrapped up its work in the short session at the beginning of July, they still have not officially adjourned.
Hanig said last month no major votes will be taken, with skeleton sessions taking place about every 30 days.