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Brannon joins race against Burr on last day of filing

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The second-place finisher to Thom Tillis in the 2014 Republican U.S. Senate primary joined the race against U.S. Sen. Richard Burr on Monday, giving the two-term incumbent from Winston-Salem a challenger who received more than a quarter of the vote in the last primary.

Greg Brannon of Cary joins a field that includes two other Republicans: former Judge Paul Wright of Dudley and Larry Holmquist of Greensboro, who also are seeking to unseat Burr.

Brannon’s entry into the Republican Senate primary on the last day of candidate filing in North Carolina makes the primary one of the races that will be most closely watched on March 15, when voters also will cast ballots for president, Congress, governor, other statewide offices, and scores of other positions.

Last year, the state moved its presidential primary forward two months to try to make it more of a factor in the presidential nomination process. The state then decided to hold all of its primaries in March instead of dividing them up and keeping the statewide and local races in their traditional May primary slot.

Moving up all of the primaries sliced two months off of the time that candidates had to decide if they wanted to run for office. Traditionally, candidate filing had taken place in February of the election year.

In addition to the U.S. Senate GOP primary, other closely watched state races will include the governor’s primary for both the GOP and the Democrats, the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate and the races for the Attorney General nominations.

The official ballots for the presidential primaries will be finalized by the North Carolina State Board of Elections in January.

Following is the list of candidates who filed with the North Carolina State Board of Elections for 2016 statewide and federal offices between Dec. 1 and Monday. All incumbents’ names are preceded by the + sign. For General Assembly, Superior Court judge, District Court judge and district attorney candidates, go to http://www.ncsbe.gov.

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U.S. SENATE

Chris Rey, Democrat

Deborah K. Ross, Democrat

Ernest T. Reeves, Democrat

Kevin D. Griffin, Democrat

Greg Brannon, Republican

Larry Holmquist, Republican

Paul Wright, Republican

+Richard Burr, Republican

Sean Haugh, Libertarian

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GOVERNOR

Ken Spaulding, Democrat

Roy Cooper, Democrat

C. Robert Brawley, Republican

Charles Kenneth Moss, Republican

+Pat McCrory, Republican

Lon Cecil, Libertarian

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ATTORNEY GENERAL

Josh Stein, Democrat

Marcus W. Williams, Democrat

Buck Newton, Republican

Jim O’Neill, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 1st District

+G.K. Butterfield, Democrat

C. L. Cooke, Libertarian

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U.S. HOUSE, 2nd District

Adam Coker, Democrat

Frank Roche, Republican

Jim Duncan, Republican

+Renee Ellmers, Republican

Tim D’Annunzio, Republican

____

U.S. HOUSE, 3rd District

David Hurst, Democrat

Phil Law, Republican

Taylor Griffin, Republican

+Walter B. Jones, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 4th District

+David Price, Democrat

Sue Googe, Republican

Teiji Kimball, Republican

____

U.S. HOUSE, 5th District

Josh Brannon, Democrat

Pattie Curran, Republican

+Virginia Foxx, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 6th District

Bruce Davis, Democrat

Jim Roberts, Democrat

Pete Glidewell, Democrat

+B. Mark Walker, Republican

Chris Hardin, Republican

____

U.S. HOUSE, 7th District

J. Wesley Casteen, Democrat

+David Rouzer, Republican

Mark D. Otto, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 8th District

Thomas Mills, Democrat

+Richard Hudson, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 9th District

Christian Cano, Democrat

George Rouco, Republican

+Robert Pittenger, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 10th District

Andy Millard, Democrat

Albert L. Wiley Jr., Republican

+Patrick McHenry, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 11th District

+Mark Meadows, Republican

Rick Bryson, Democrat

Tom Hill, Democrat

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U.S. HOUSE, 12th District

+Alma Adams, Democrat

Gardenia Henley, Democrat

Juan Antonio Martin, Jr., Democrat

Leon Threatt, Republican

Ryan Duffie, Republican

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U.S. HOUSE, 13th District

John P. McNeil, Democrat

Ron Sanyal, Democrat

+George Holding, Republican

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LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR

Holly Jones, Democrat

Linda Coleman, Democrat

Robert Earl Wilson, Democrat

Ronald L. Newton, Democrat

+Dan Forest, Republican

J. J. Summerell, Libertarian

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STATE AUDITOR

+Beth A. Wood, Democrat

Chuck Stuber, Republican

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AGRICULTURE COMMISSIONER

Walter Smith, Democrat

+Steve Troxler, Republican

Andy Stevens, Republican

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INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

+Wayne Goodwin, Democrat

Joe McLaughlin, Republican

Mike Causey, Republican

Ronald (Ron) Pierce, Republican

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LABOR COMMISSIONER

Charles Meeker, Democrat

Mazie Ferguson, Democrat

+Cherie Berry, Republican

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SECRETARY OF STATE

+Elaine Marshall, Democrat

A.J. Daoud, Republican

Michael LaPaglia, Republican

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STATE TREASURER

Dan Blue III, Democrat

Ron Elmer, Democrat

Dale R. Folwell, Republican

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SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION

Henry J. Pankey, Democrat

+June Atkinson, Democrat

J. Wesley Sills, Republican

Mark Johnson, Republican

Rosemary Stein, Republican

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SUPREME COURT

+Bob Edmunds (has retention election, filed candidacy in June)

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COURT OF APPEALS

+Richard Dietz

Vince Rozier

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COURT OF APPEALS

Abe Jones

+Bob Hunter

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COURT OF APPEALS

+Linda Stephens

Phil Berger Jr.

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COURT OF APPEALS

Rickye McKoy-Mitchell

+Valerie Zachary

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