North Carolina General Assembly Week in Review

October 30, 2020

Pardon Our Dust

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This week, North Carolina set record high numbers of reported COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic back in March. In response to the high numbers of coronavirus cases throughout the state, Governor Roy Cooper signed Executive Order 171, extending North Carolina’s eviction moratorium through the end of the year. The eviction moratorium mirrors the federal moratorium issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The executive order protects tenants from being evicted if they cannot pay their rent due to the pandemic. The entire state remains paused in Phase 3 of reopening through November 13.

As of Thursday morning, in the state of North Carolina, there were  269,021 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, 3,950,641 completed tests, 4,283 deaths, and 1,181 current hospitalizations. As we all continue to feel the effects of the global pandemic and adjust to a new normal, we want to highlight a few ways our clients across North Carolina have worked to support residents and make this time a little easier for those throughout the state. Read more about what our clients are doing to help by clicking here.

For more information on COVID-19 in North Carolina, click here to visit the Department of Health and Human Services website, and be sure to stay up to date on the latest federal guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) by clicking here.

Early Voting

As early voting comes to an end this weekend, voters throughout North Carolina have already set record numbers of ballots cast. According to the most recent data from the State Board of Elections, out of the 7,338,516 registered voters in the state, 854,993 have cast their absentee ballots and a record-breaking 3,030,640 voters have cast their ballots in-person at one-stop early voting locations. Combined, these numbers show that over half, 52.7%, of North Carolinians have already voted in the 2020 election. The 3,867,846 ballots cast before the early voting period ends this year compare to the approximately 3,112,000 ballots cast during the entire early voting period in 2016.

While over half of North Carolinians have already voted, another 48% of voters still have not cast their ballots. With early voting ending Saturday, October 31, most of those who still need to vote will make their way to the polls on Election Day, Tuesday, November 3. In North Carolina, polling places will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Voters who are in line by 7:30 p.m. will be allowed to vote, but they must show up to their assigned polling location. For more information on how, when, and where you can vote in North Carolina, visit the State Board of Elections website, or click here.  

Elections Roundup

With just four days to go before voters across the country will have cast their ballots for who they would like to serve as their elected officials, McGuireWoods Consulting is bringing you a comprehensive 2020 election website – your one-stop resource for this year’s presidential, congressional, gubernatorial, attorneys general, and state legislative races. Complete with concise information about how elections are shaping up around the country – including snapshots of primary results and hot-button ballot initiatives – our site provides a landscape view of our nation’s political scene and insights on potential shifts in the tide. Click here to visit MWC’s 2020 election website. 

Interested in even more election insight? Want to keep up with the latest results after polls close November 3? Join members of our MWC team from across the country for a series of election recap webinars. Click here to register for our 2020 Election Recap webinar with University of Virginia’s Center for Politics Professor Larry Sabato on Thursday, November 5 at 11:00 a.m. ET. Register for our North Carolina Election Recap webinar Thursday, November 5 at 10:00 a.m. ET here, our Florida Election Recap Thursday, November 5 at 1:00 p.m. ET here, our South Carolina Election Recap and 2021 Legislative Outlook webinar Monday, November 9 at 11:00 a.m. ET here, or click here to register for our 2020 Election Recap: Gubernatorial, Attorneys General and State Legislative Races webinar Monday, November 9 at 2:00 p.m. ET.

Over the last few weeks leading up to the November 3 election, our team has highlighted races around North Carolina, along with other election resources to keep everyone informed not just on what is happening in Raleigh, but all over the state, region by region. To catch up on all of the state races we have covered so far, you can check out some of our recent editions of Week In Review. For an overview of North Carolina’s US Senate race also happening this year, click here. For races taking place in the Western part of the state, click here, for Central North Carolina races, click here, and for US House and Eastern North Carolina races, click here

Our team also breaks down the most competitive races for the state Senate and the state House as Democrats fight to gain majority control of at least one of the chambers in the General Assembly. Catch up on our state Senate recap by clicking here and our state House races to watch recap by clicking here. For an overview of the race to be North Carolina’s next Lieutenant Governor, click here. Finally, for a breakdown of the 2020 gubernatorial race and each Council of State contest, click here or here.

Legislative Majorities

While the presidential and congressional contests on the ballot this November have received the majority of attention in the recent weeks leading up to the election, North Carolina Democrats and Republicans continue to battle it out for seats in the state General Assembly. During the 2019-2020 legislative session, Republicans held majorities in the both the state House and Senate. The House is currently made up of 65 Republicans and 55 Democrats, while 29 Republicans and 21 Democrats make up the state Senate. Democrats will need to win a net of six seats in order to gain majority control of the House. In the Senate, Democrats will need a net gain of four seats to win the majority. If Republicans are able to hang on to all of the seats they currently hold, both chambers will remain under Republican majorities for the 2020-2021 legislative session.

For a closer look at the party breakdown in both the House and Senate, check out the seating charts below.

*Note: Democratic members seats are marked with blue, Republican members seats are marked with red, and a yellow marking indicates the seat is either vacant or the current member is not seeking reelection for that seat. 

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