North Carolina Returns to Partisan Elections
October 30th, 2020
North Carolina conducted partisan judicial elections for most of its history until 2004. The state was controlled by Democrats, and so partisan elections allowed the Democratic party to dominate the courts as well. Then in 2004, as Republicans became more successful in statewide elections, Democrats in the state legislature switched to nonpartisan elections. Once the Republican takeover of the state was complete, the Republicans in the state legislature re-instated partisan judicial elections, starting in 2018. As of now, the court has six Democrats and one Republican. Three seats are at stake in the 2020 election.
The history of North Carolina’s judicial elections, as well as an overview of the current judicial election can be found in this Raleigh News & Observer article.