Override Done On Bill Canceling Judge Primaries

Oct 17, 2017

Updated 10:50 a.m., October 17, 2017

There are now no plans to hold primary elections for trial court and appeals court races next year. That's because the General Assembly has completed its override of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's veto of a bill containing the one-time cancellation.

The House finished the override with a 72-40 vote Tuesday morning. The Senate voted to make the bill law despite Cooper's objections Monday night.

Republican in charge of the legislature sought to stop the primaries because they say it would reduce confusion if they act early next year and redraw judicial election boundaries for District Court and Superior Court judges. The House approved such a redistricting earlier this month and the Senate could take them up in January. The bill also pushes back candidate filing for those seats from February to June.

Updated 2:15 a.m.

Legislation making it easier for third-party and unaffiliated candidates to get on North Carolina ballots but also reworking judicial elections for 2018 could soon become law despite Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's objections.

The House scheduled a Tuesday morning session to consider an override of Cooper's veto of the bill approved two weeks ago. The Senate voted to override Monday evening.

Cooper vetoed the bill because he was unhappy with a portion that would cancel primary elections for local and statewide court seats next year and delay candidate filing for those jobs until June.

Republicans controlling both chambers say the judicial changes would give them more time to consider redrawing judicial election boundaries and possibly a constitutional amendment altering how judges are chosen. Cooper says it's just another GOP power grab.