Walker pledges to have High Point office

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Feb. 8—HIGH POINT — Former congressman Mark Walker said that he realizes the importance of High Point in the race for the redrawn 6th Congressional District, which is why he pledges to have his congressional office in the city if he wins.

Walker, a Republican candidate who's a longtime pastor from Greensboro, already has stationed his campaign headquarters in north High Point. The pledge to establish his flagship congressional office in the city stems from High Point having the largest percentage of voters among the cities in the district, Walker told The High Point Enterprise during an interview this week.

The redrawn 6th District covers most of High Point, western Greensboro, eastern Forsyth County, all of Davidson, Davie and Rowan counties, and the western edge of Cabarrus County.

Walker, who previously represented the 6th District, is one of six candidates in the Republican primary. The others are former High Point mayor Jay Wagner, GOP activist Addison McDowell of Davidson County, 2022 6th District nominee Christian Castelli, physician Mary Ann Contogiannis of Greensboro and Bo Hines, who narrowly lost a congressional race in eastern North Carolina in 2022.

Like most Republicans running for office this year, Walker is highlighting the issue of undocumented immigrants crossing the southern border. Walker said he wouldn't have voted for a bipartisan bill recently negotiated in Congress if he were in office, but not because of opposition to the legislation by former Republican president Donald Trump.

Critics have said that Republicans won numerous concessions on border security in exchange for aid for Ukraine but caved on support for the compromise so Democratic President Joe Biden doesn't have a perceived political victory. But Walker said he opposes the legislation because it doesn't go far enough to address the border crisis.

Two of the other candidates in the primary have secured key endorsements. McDowell has received the endorsement of Trump, and Hines has the backing of the influential conservative group Club for Growth.

But Walker said that he has the advantage of having served in the House for six years previously, with a track record of advocating for conservative government and helping constituents.

"I am the only proven conservative in the race," he said. "When I was in the House, I found ways to lead."

Walker said he has raised approximately $700,000, which he said gives him the resources for the last month of the race.

Voters will settle the primary March 5, with early voting Feb. 15-March 2.

The winner of the Republican primary will face no Democratic opponent on the November ballot. Two-term Rep. Kathy Manning, D-6th, declined to seek reelection because she says Republican state legislators gerrymandered the district so that a Democratic candidate has no chance of winning, and no other Democrat filed to run.

Walker said that he doesn't expect a runoff inthe primary, which would happen if the first-place candidate doesn't get at least 30% of the total vote. Ten years ago, Walker secured the GOP nomination in his first run for Congress when he defeated Phil Berger Jr. in a runoff between the top two finishers in the 6th District primary.

pjohnson@hpenews.com — 336-888-3528 — @HPEpaul