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Kerr to retire from N.C. Senate

State Sen. John Kerr is retiring from the legislature.

He will serve the remainder of his current term, which expires at the end of 2008, but he will not seek re-election, according to a news release from state Senate leader Marc Basnight.

Kerr intends to remain active in politics and to campaign on behalf of others. Kerr, a Democrat and a lawyer from Goldsboro, represents Greene County and parts of Wayne and Pitt Counties.

Update: Snow Hill Mayor Don Davis, a Democrat, announced last month that he will run for Kerr's seat. Greenville attorney Marvin Blount III said he is also considering a run.

More after the jump.

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Kerr’s retirement ends a 20-year career in the legislature. For at least the past 10 years, the N.C. Center for Public Policy Research has ranked Kerr as one of the top 10 most effective senators.

In 1986, Kerr was elected to the House of Representatives, where he served three terms. In 1992, Kerr was elected to the Senate, where he continues to serve and holds several key positions.

"John Kerr is one of the best and most dedicated public servants our state has ever seen," Basnight said in the news release.


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Re: Kerr to retire from N.C. Senate

Senator John Kerr has done a great job representing the people of district 5, but it's time for change. Its time for somebody to bring new ideas to Raleigh. Thats why I'm endorsing Mayor Don Davis of Snow Hill for District 5 Senator.

Re: Kerr to retire from N.C. Senate

Also, whatever party Moore was in on November 19 is the party he is running in. You can't switch parties and run inside 90 days of the filing period.

Re: Kerr to retire from N.C. Senate

Yea, I agree, Wayne County will have a lot of pull in this race, but Greenville/Pitt County, one of the largest counties East of the 95 does not have a Senator to call there own...Jenkins from Tarboro, and Kerr from Goldsboro. That was one of Todd Siebels main issues when he ran and got beated in '06 against Kerr. I think the redistriciting of that seat in general was lousy... but expect a strong candidate from Pitt County....thats just a prediction

Re: Kerr to retire from N.C. Senate

That is a pretty Pitt-centric view of who will win District 5. Consider that Wayne County is the most populous county in the district.

Expect a Crowded field to replace Kerr

A lot of people in eastern NC have been wondering whether or not Kerr was going to run in '08 or not. This announcement just opened up, what is likely to be a very contested race, in this "swing" district. A look at potential candidates on both sides:

Democrats:
State Rep. Marian McLawhorn
Snow Hill Mayor Don Davis (confirmed he is running)
Greenville Attorney Marvin Blount III
Outgoing Greenville Mayor Don Parrott

Republicans:
2005 GOP Nominee Todd Siebels
Pitt County Commissioner Jimmy Garris
Outgoing Greenville City Councilman Ray Craft
Media Mogul/Conservative Pundit Henry Hinton

Wild Card:
Former State Senator Tony Moore (May run as Dem or Repub)

Either way, expect both parties to dump a lot of money into this one.

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