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North Carolina Rep. Tim Moore won't run for House seat in 2024, ending reign as speaker

NC House Speaker Tim Moore speaks at a press conference on April 5, 2023 announcing Rep. Tricia Cotham's switch from the Democratic to Republican party.
Matt Ramey
for WUNC
NC House Speaker Tim Moore speaks at a press conference on April 5, 2023 announcing Rep. Tricia Cotham's switch from the Democratic to Republican party.

North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore, who's already said that his record fifth two-year term leading the chamber would be his last, confirmed Thursday that he won't run for reelection to his House seat in 2024, either.

The Cleveland County Republican was first elected to the House in 2002.

“I don’t plan to seek reelection to the state House,” Moore told reporters after a public event outside the Legislative Building. And when asked what he'll run for instead, he replied: “I don't know yet.”

During the 2021 redistricting period, Moore weighed running for a congressional seat in a potential open district west of Charlotte, but he declined. That possibility could resurface as legislators complete another remapping of the state's congressional district next month. Candidate filing begins Dec. 4, with primaries set for March 5.

Moore, an attorney who turns 53 next week, became the House Rules Committee chairman in 2011 when Republicans took over the chamber. He succeeded now-U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis as speaker in 2015.

Moore also said Thursday he would serve out the remainder of his term representing the 111th House seat and will be speaker during the budget-adjusting work session that should begin next spring.

“I’m going to serve the balance of my term. I’ve got a lot of good work to do and looking at next steps ... at a number of great options out there,” Moore said.

Moore confirmed his planned departure from the House at the end of 2024 while responding to questions about his pull to insert spending provisions in the budget that will benefit his region, such as $40 million toward a new Cleveland County Courthouse and 911 center.

“I’m not going to be here forever, and whoever replaces me will likely be sitting somewhere toward the back of the room,” with less influence, Moore said.

Some previous speakers over the past 30 years have remained rank-and-file members of the legislature.

Current House Republicans already saying they intend to run for speaker in early 2025 includes Majority Leader John Bell of Wayne County, Rules Committee Chairman Destin Hall of Caldwell County and House Freedom Caucus Chairman Keith Kidwell of Pamlico County. Rep. Jason Saine of Lincoln County, a senior budget-writer, also has said he's considering a bid.

The elevation of another Republican speaker is most likely contingent on the GOP retaining a majority after the 2024 elections.

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