Early voting starts tomorrow in 2nd GOP Primary


By Jon Hawley
Staff Writer

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Early voting starts Wednesday, June 19, in the second Republican primary for the 3rd Congressional District.

The second primary is between state Rep. Greg Murphy, a doctor from Greenville, and Dr. Joan Perry, of Kinston. In Albemarle-area counties, voting will run on weekdays from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. from Wednesday until July 5. The exception is July 4; polls will be closed for the holiday. Polls will not be open on weekends, based on schedules posted by the counties’ election offices.

Voters should vote in their county of residence. Polling locations by county are:

Pasquotank: 1409 Parkview Drive, Board of Elections office, Elizabeth City

Camden: 117 N.C. 343 North, Camden

Chowan: 730 N. Granville St., Edenton

Currituck: 2811 Caratoke Highway, Currituck

Perquimans: 601A Edenton Rd. St., Hertford

After early voting, voters may still vote on election day, July 9, when polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. through 7:30 p.m. throughout the congressional district. Election-day voters will need to vote in their precincts. To find out their polling site, voters should call their county election offices or use the Voter Lookup tool at www.ncsbe.gov.

Voters do not need to present photo identification to vote in elections this year – including municipal elections in the fall – but will need to have photo ID to vote in 2020, according to the N.C. State Board of Elections.

The July 9 primary is open to some unaffiliated voters as well as registered Republicans; North Carolina is a “semi-closed primary state” that allows independents to vote in partisan primaries. However, that comes with an additional restriction, Pasquotank Elections Director Kelli Price explained Monday. Because the primary is a runoff to the primary held in April, unaffiliated voters may vote in this election if: they voted Republican in the April primary; or did not vote at all.

In effect, Democratic-aligned voters must sit this one out.

The winner of the primary will face Democrat Allen Thomas, of Greenville, and third-party candidates in the general election on Sept. 10.

Republicans are having an additional primary because none of the 17 candidates who ran in April got more than 30 percent of the vote. Murphy got the largest share, at 22.5 percent, followed by Perry at 15.4 percent. That allowed Perry to request the runoff.

Both Murphy and Perry have campaigned as Christian conservatives who’ve expressed support for President Donald Trump, particularly on key issues of immigration and trade. Both have also said they oppose abortion without exceptions.

In one disagreement, Perry opposes expanding Medicaid while Murphy has proposed a Republican approach to it; that approach includes work requirements for beneficiaries and requires non-state sources pay its costs. Murphy argues Medicaid is needed to care for the working poor who fall into a coverage gap. Perry contends Medicaid expansion would overburden the health system, and there are other ways to help them get health care.

In another difference, Murphy would bring state legislative experience to the job, while Perry says she offers perspective as a political outsider, mother and grandmother.