North Carolina's campaign season opened at noon with the national debate over the war in Iraq echoing in Tar Heel congressional races.
Two Republican congressional candidates, Joe McLaughlin of Jacksonville and Will Breazeale of Elizabethtown, filed for election against incumbents who they say should be turned out of office for not being sufficiently supportive of the U.S. military effort in Iraq, Rob Christensen reports.
Dozens of candidates lined up in the State Board of Elections for the filling period that opened at noon. They included Democratic Congressman Bob Etheridge, Republican Labor Commissioner Cherie Berry, and Beth Wood, a former CPA in the state auditor's office, who wants to run against her hold boss Les Merritt.
Ronnie Anlsey, a Raleigh attorney, filed as a Democratic candidate for agriculture commissioner.
More after the jump.
Among those present was Dot Helms, wife of former Sen. Jesse Helms, who was there to support the re-election of granddaughter, Wake District Court Judge Jennifer Knox.
McLaughlin, a former Army veteran who is now a financial planner, is seeking to upset 3rd District Republican Walter Jones in the May 6 primary.
Breazeale, a major in the Army reserves, who served three tours of duty in Iraq, is opposing Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre of the 7th district in the November general elections.
"McIntyre wants to give up," said Breazeale, a 39-year old airline pilot. Breazeale said the U.S. needed to stay in longer to train Iraqi troops.
But there was also a war opponent. Marshall Adame, an ex-Marine and former diplomat, is a Democrat a running against Jones in the general election, because he is opposed to the Iraq war. Adame has one son in Iraq and another son home recovering from wound he received in Iraq.