Live Results: Democratic state Sen. Wiley Nickel defeats Bo Hines, a Trump-endorsed Republican, in North Carolina's 13th Congressional District election
Democrat Wiley Nickel defeated Republican Bo Hines in North Carolina's 13th Congressional District.
The 13th District is split between the urban Triangle and rural Sandhills.
A win for Hines is a test of Trump's influence over the GOP.
Democrat Wiley Nickel, who is a member of the North Carolina State Senate, has defeated the Trump-endorsed Republican Bo Hines in North Carolina's 13th Congressional District.
Polls closed in the state at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
North Carolina's 13th Congressional District candidates
Hines, 27, a political newcomer with virtually no experience, raised eyebrows even within the GOP when former President Donald Trump offered him his endorsement.
Hines was seen as a "carpetbagger" in the eyes of some local Republicans — he had no personal ties to the district and lived more than 100 miles away. A month out from the primary, he moved to the district he's seeking to represent.
"It feels like it's incumbent on us to make sure everybody understands that Bo Hines may be a fine fellow — I don't know him — but the truth of it is he's not a resident of the district," Linwood Parker, chair of the Johnston County Republican Men's Organization and former mayor of Four Oaks, told Politico. "He's coming in, just trying to cherry pick a district he can win."
Hines won the Republican nomination among a crowded slate of GOP candidates, ultimately defeating seven challengers to advance to the November general election. If elected, he will replace Rep. Ted Budd — a staunch Trump ally and Republican nominee in North Carolina's US Senate race to replace retiring Republican Sen. Richard Burr.
Hines has has some curious moments during the general election, such as when he twice said a bad economy under President Joe Biden means he couldn't afford to give up his salary. But an Insider review of federal financial disclosures indicates that Hines has no salary, and instead, appears to live off money from a family trust fund.
Nickel is a member of the North Carolina State Senate. He previously worked as a member of then-Vice President Al Gore's national advance staff, as well as a member of former President Barack Obama's campaign staff. The state senator is a part of the Obama Alumni Association.
Abortion was a hot topic in the race. Nickel, a staunch Democrat, told the New York Times the day the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade was "our best fund-raising day for the campaign ever." He added: "We're going to keep hammering this issue."
Voting history for North Carolina's 13th Congressional District
North Carolina's 13th Congressional District encompasses Johnston County and parts of Wake, Wayne, and Harnett counties. It's also split between the urban Triangle and rural Sandhills.
The district was redrawn to include a mix of urban, suburban and rural communities in redistricting following the 2020 Census, making it a competitive, near 50-50 district.
The race was expected to be one of the most competitive in November.
The money race
According to OpenSecrets, Hines raised $2.9 million, spent $2.7 million, and had $156,835 of cash on hand, as of October 19. His opponent, Nickel, raised $3.1 million, spent $2.8 million, and had $389,847 of cash still left to spend, as of October 19.
As of early November, super PACs, national party committees, and other non-candidate groups had combined to spend more than $14.9 million to advocate for or against candidates in this race, including during the primaries.
What experts say
The race between Hines and Nickel is rated as a "toss-up" by Inside Elections, a "toss-up" by The Cook Political Report, and "leans Republican" by Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics.
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