2020 Election

#NC11: Aggressive Tweets Overshadow Race

Sep 17, 2020
Cory Vaillancourt

Candidates seeking to replace former Congressman Mark Meadows in Western North Carolina have spent plenty of time attacking each other.  It’s gone to a new level now however after controversial tweets resurfaced earlier this month.

Matt Bush / Blue Ridge Public Radio

On September 4th and 5th Blue Ridge Public Radio in partnership with Smoky Mountain News and Mountain Xpress held two forums with the major party candidates for the currently vacant seat in North Carolina's 11th Congressional district.  Republican Madison Cawthorn and Democrat Moe Davis faced each other at Western Carolina University's Biltmore Park campus, and then again at the school's main campus in Cullowhee.  Cory Vaillancourt of Smoky Mountain News and BPR moderated. 

#NC11: From Military Prosecutor To Congressional Candidate

Sep 7, 2020
(Photo courtesy of candidate)

For Air Force Colonel Morris Davis, a career military lawyer, the assignment he won in 2005 could solidify his opportunity to become a general.  The North Carolina native – and now the Democratic candidate for North Carolina’s 11th congressional district -- was named chief prosecutor of the alleged al Qaeda terrorists imprisoned at the US Navy base in Guantanamo, Cuba where they were subject to military justice. 

North Carolina will be one of the state’s that decides this fall’s presidential election, plus which party controls the U.S. Senate.  It also has one of the most watched gubernatorial elections in the U.S. this fall, plus every seat in the North Carolina General Assembly is on the ballot, all of the council state, seats on county commissions, city councils, town aldermen…you get the point. 

Republican Madison Cawthorn and Democrat Moe Davis, candidates for North Carolina's 11th Congressional district seat left vacant by White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, have both agreed to appear at a two-day joint forum hosted by three of the district’s largest media outlets, Blue Ridge Public Radio, Smoky Mountain News, and Mountain Xpress.

#NC11: Cawthorn Mingles With Far-Right Fringe

Aug 26, 2020

Conservative congressional candidate Madison Cawthorn, scheduled to speak Wednesday at the GOP national convention, traveled to Texas last month to visit a private border wall and echoed discredited child sex trafficking claims promoted by the extremist conspiracy theory movement.

Cory Vaillancourt

(9:00 p.m. Monday) - Shortly after being renominated for a second term, President Donald Trump visited Western North Carolina Monday afternoon to tout an agricultural program created to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

#NC11: Candidate’s Claim Creates False Impression

Aug 11, 2020

The narrative created by Republican congressional-candidate Madison Cawthorn paints a picture of a bright, young man headed to the U.S. Naval Academy until he was severely injured in an auto crash.

#NC11: Cawthorn Takes A Hard-Right Turn

Aug 10, 2020

When then 24-year-old Madison Cawthorn easily defeated a Trump-backed rival to capture the GOP nomination in Western North Carolina’s 11th congressional district, he declared that his mission would be to rescue his party from a “generational time bomb.”

With the presidential nominating conventions all but washed out for 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, political junkies have to settle for two things that are the bread and butter of the downtime in campaigns - fundraising totals and polls.

Helen Chickering

Madison Cawthorn's overwhelming win Tuesday in the runoff election for the Republican looks like an upset, as the 24-year-old finished second to Lynda Bennett in the March 3rd primary.  His win Tuesday by a 2-to-1 margin wasn't as unexpected as it looks, though the vote totals were.

Cory Vaillancourt

Madison Cawthorn, who would be the youngest member of Congress should he be elected this fall, trounced fellow Republican Lynda Bennett in Tuesday's runoff election to win the GOP nomination for North Carolina's 11th Congressional district.  He'll face Democrat Moe Davis in the November general election.

In less than a month, voters in Western North Carolina decide the Republican nomination in the 11th Congressional District.  Outside of whether Lynda Bennett or Madison Cawthorn wins on June 23rd, how voters cast their ballots during a pandemic will be a major takeaway from the race - and a potential foreshadow of how prevalent mail-in voting will be for the November general election.

Republican congressional-candidate Lynda Bennett, who hopes to win the District 11 seat recently vacated by her political patron Mark Meadows, is calling for an immediate end to North Carolina’s stay-home order, calling pandemic restrictions an infringement “on our rights and freedom.”

Matt Bush / Blue Ridge Public Radio

Most of Western North Carolina is going through the COVID-19 pandemic without a member of Congress following the resignation of Mark Meadows on March 30th to become President Donald Trump's chief of staff.  That means the 11th Congressional District seat for North Carolina is vacant - and will remain that way for most if not all of the rest of 2020.

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Only two candidates will be onstage for Sunday's Democratic primary debate: former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. The CNN-Univision debate was relocated from Arizona to Washington, D.C., and will not have an in-person audience due to coronavirus concerns.

Caroline Amenabar / NPR

Fourteen states (including North Carolina) and one U.S. territory hold presidential primaries Tuesday.  

Caroline Amenabar / NPR

The Democratic presidential primary candidates are competing in South Carolina on Saturday, hoping to win over voters in the fourth contest of 2020. 

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Democratic presidential hopefuls are on stage in South Carolina ahead of that state’s primary. The candidates’ battle follows Sen. Bernie Sanders’ wins in the New Hampshire primary and the Nevada caucuses. 

Matt Bush / Blue Ridge Public Radio

Early voting concludes February 29th ahead of the March 3rd primary election in North Carolina.  Voters will decide nominees for a large number of races in the fall.  In Western North Carolina, choosing a new member of Congress headlines the list of elections on the ballot.  The 11th Congressional District has new boundaries this year, ensuring all of the westernmost portion of the state is in the same district.  It also has no incumbent.

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Democratic presidential candidates are debating Wednesday night, this time in Las Vegas ahead of Saturday's caucuses in Nevada. 

Early voting is underway in North Carolina for the March 3rd primary.  Voters in Western North Carolina will have plenty of candidates from the major parties to choose from for the 11th Congressional District seat – 16 of them to be exact, 11 Republicans and 5 Democrats.  

BPR Early Voting Guide For Western North Carolina

Feb 12, 2020

Early voting in North Carolina starts on February 13th and runs until Feburary 29th.  Same day voter registration is available each day of early voting.  Photo ID is not required to vote during the primary election.  The deadline to register to vote in order to cast a ballot on primary day March 3rd has already passed, so those who have yet to register will only be able to vote during the early voting period.

Cory Vaillancourt

Another county in Western North Carolina has joined the ‘Second Amendment sanctuary’ movement.  Henderson County commissioners on Tuesday approved a resolution supporting gun rights.  Commissioners in Buncombe County also heard from supporters of a resolution, though no action was taken. 

Another county where this has been brought up is Haywood. 

Ahead of North Carolina's March 3rd primary election, Blue Ridge Public Radio will hold candidate forums for three different races.  The forums will be broadcast live on the station's Facebook page.

Caroline Amenabar / NPR

The Iowa caucuses on Monday are the first contest in the 2020 presidential race. Follow NPR's liveblog for news and scenes from the field as well as live results below.  

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Six Democratic presidential candidates are debating in Iowa Tuesday night, less than three weeks from the caucuses there. NPR reporters are providing background and analysis of the candidates' remarks in real-time.  The debate starts at 9 p.m., and the live analysis starts shortly beforehand.  Follow along below.

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A federal judge plans to block the latest attempt by North Carolina Republicans at the General Assembly to require a photo identification to vote.

Candidate filing in North Carolina for the 2020 primary election ended on December 20th.  The primary will be held on March 3rd, 2020.  The deadline to register to vote on that day is February 7th, 2020.  There is no same day registration on primary day.  There is same day registration during the early voting period before the primary.  Early voting for the 2020 primary election runs from February 13th to 29th.  The deadline to request an absentee ballot by mail for the primary election is February 25th, 2020.

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