Murphy handily wins 3rd Congressional District primary
By Ginger Livingston
The Daily Reflector
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
GREENVILLE — State Rep. Greg Murphy, R-Pitt, handily won the GOP nomination for the 3rd Congressional District special election, receiving nearly 60 percent of the votes cast, according to Tuesday’s unofficial results.
Murphy won 12 of the 17 counties in the district, which extends from the Virginia border to Onslow County. He received 21,444 votes to his opponent Joan Perry’s 14,472 votes.
“This is such a humbling experience. I want to thank all of you,” Murphy said to the more than 100 supporters who gathered at the Greenville Convention Center to watch the election results.
Murphy said his campaign motto has been “We the People.”
“I go to Washington D.C. to represent ‘We the People’ and I think the establishment knows that,” Murphy said. “That’s who makes up our district. I am accountable to you, I am here for you and I am going to Washington D.C., to represent you.”
There is one more hurdle to overcome, Murphy said, the Sept. 10 special election where he will face Democrat Allen Thomas, former mayor of Greenville, along with candidates from the Libertarian and Constitution parties.
The special election is needed because long-time congressman Walter B. Jones Jr. died in February.
Along with his supporters Murphy thanked U.S. Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina and Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, founding members of the Freedom Caucus, for their support.
“I’ll tell you, the 3rd District will not answer to (House speaker) Nancy Pelosi. The 3rd District is not about infanticide, the 3rd District is not about open borders, the 3rd District is here to support our president and that’s what we are going to do in the next two months,” Murphy said. “We are going to carry that message forward to Sept. 10 and I will be honored to be your congressman for eastern North Carolina.”
Tuesday’s results are unofficial. Counties will canvass and certify the results on July 19. The state election board has not set a date to finalize the results.
The Associated Press reports Washington-based political committees spent well over $1 million to support either Murphy or Perry in the runoff. Each campaign or its supporting groups ran attack ads accusing the opponent of liberal tendencies and questioning the opponent’s commitment to President Trump’s agenda.
Murphy’s campaign had outraised Perry entering the campaign’s final days, but independent expenditure groups backing Perry eliminated any gap, The Associated Press reported.
Murphy also said his victory showed the people of the 3rd Congressional District could not be bought.
“We overcame $1.4 million with a bunch of people on the phone,” Doug Raymond, Murphy’s campaign manager, said, elaborating on the candidate’s statement. “It was the ultimate grassroots campaign.”