It was only a year-and-a-half ago that Republican U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers was the long-shot candidate who rode into Washington on a wave of public discontent. The former nurse from Dunn’s message was that beltway politicians are out of touch with everyday Americans. Now, in her first re-election bid, five challengers want to kick her out of Washington. Three are Republicans. Read the full story here.
--A week before the May 8 primary, Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton opens a big lead in the polls and money race. Get the state of the race here.
--The four Republicans competing for the secretary of state job -- Mike Beitler, A.J. Daoud, Kenn Gardner and Ed Goodwin -- want to stretch the agency’s bounds beyond handling corporate records and use it to serve as a business ambassador to lure more companies to North Carolina.