Democrat Anita Earls won a seat on the North Carolina Supreme Court after besting two Republicans on the ballot.
Earls, a civil rights lawyer who worked in the Department of Justice in the Clinton administration, earned 49.5 percent of the vote and 1,779,592 votes. Barbara Jackson finished second in the race with 34.1 percent of the vote.
Chris Anglin, whose appearance on the ballot as a Republican was a point of contention, finished third in the race with 16.4 percent of the vote. Republican legislators had sought to prevent him from running in the race because he previously had been registered as a Democrat. Lawmakers passed a law to remove the GOP label from his name on the ballot, but Anglin sued and a judge ruled in his favor.
Earls’ win was trumpeted by the North Carolina Democratic Party. The state’s party chairman, Wayne Goodwin, said the party was “incredibly proud of all that she has accomplished and all that she will accomplish as a justice on the North Carolina Supreme Court.”
Democrats also won seats on the NC Court of Appeals, including John Arrowood, Tobias Hampson and Allegra Katherine Collins.
Republican George Bell bested two Democrats to become the District 26C judge on the North Carolina Superior Court.
Other Republicans to win district court judgeships on the ballot include Michael Stading, Paulina Havelka and Sean Smith.
Several candidates went unchallenged for district court judgeships. Democrats Donnie Hoover, Karen Eady-Williams, Lou Trosch, Paige McThenia, Regan Miller, Tracy Hewett and Rickye McKoy-Mitchell all went unchallenged. Republican Matt Osman went unchallenged as well.
Karen McCallum bested Khalif Rhodes for the NC district 26F court judgeship.
Voters also confirmed their selections for Mecklenburg County district attorney and sheriff. Spencer Merriweather, the district attorney, and Garry McFadden, the sheriff, both ran unopposed in the general election after tough primaries.