Daily Tar Heel: Graig Meyer and Landon Woods win respective party nominations for N.C. Senate District 23 seat


This story was originally published on the Daily Tar Heel website on Tuesday, May 18.

By Emmy Martin

N.C. Rep. Graig Meyer, D-Caswell, Orange, and Republican candidate Landon Woods are projected to win their respective primary elections for the N.C. Senate District 23 seat, according to unofficial results.

They will face off in the general election for the two-year term as a state senator.

This district includes Orange, Caswell and Person counties and is currently represented by Sen. Valerie Foushee, D-Chatham, Orange, who is projected to win the Democratic nomination for the state’s fourth congressional district.

Meyer won 82.36 percent of the votes in the Democratic primary in Orange County, Caswell and Person counties, finishing ahead of Jamie DeMent Holcomb, who received 17.64 percent.

Woods received 58.23 percent of the Republican votes in the counties, while competitor Bill Cooke received 41.77 percent.

Meyer, the Democratic nominee who served eight years in the N.C. House of Representatives, said he has dedicated his career to public service and is thankful that voters want to allow him to serve in the state senate.

“I feel great,” Meyer said. “We’ve had such tremendous community support throughout the whole campaign, both in the area that I currently represent and the areas that are new to me.”

“I know there are very big and very important challenges in front of us that make a real difference in people’s lives, and I am ready to look for the opportunities to take on those challenges and make Orange, Person and Caswell counties, and all of North Carolina, a place where we can raise our families and where we all love living,” he said.

Meyer said that his main priorities include fully funding public education, supporting teachers and students, taking on climate change and advancing an equitable and inclusive society.

He said he is thankful for the other candidates who ran for the senate seat.

“Having run for office and served several terms, I know how much work it is to run for any office and how much sacrifice candidates and their families and communities put into it,” Meyer said. “I am so grateful to everyone who has run because it takes people stepping up to have a healthy and thriving democracy.”

Woods, the Republican nominee, said he will fight for people and push legislation to bring jobs to the area and lower taxes on the working class if he wins in November.

A Caswell County native, he wants to help those in his county and across the district have a better standard of living.

“I am from an area that is not as much like Orange County,” Woods said. “We are the second poorest county in North Carolina. I see a lot of poverty, I see a lot of people hurting.”

Woods also said his campaign has gone well so far. He expressed gratitude to voters and those who helped with his campaign.

“I just want to say thank you to everyone who came out and believed in the cause and obviously showed support,” he said. “I just want to continue to push through and continue to go to the next round, and hopefully I will be the next senator in District 23.”

Holcomb, the candidate running against Meyer for the Democratic nomination for the seat, thanked voters, friends, family and the people that supported her throughout her campaign.  She said that it was an honor to serve in the same race as so many great candidates.

“I would just like to thank everybody for a good fight,” she said. “I think everyone has worked really really hard through this campaign.”

Holcomb spent election day visiting voters at the polls.

“I have had a great day meeting voters from one end of this district to the other,” she said.

Cooke, the other Republican candidate in the primary race, did not respond to requests for comment from The Daily Tar Heel.

Woods said that he and Cooke remained friendly the entire campaign. Woods also added that he and Meyer talked on the phone on Wednesday morning after the election results came out.

“We had a very friendly conversation and we both pledged to keep it 100 percent friendly,” Woods said. “No low-grade political tactics, it is going to be a completely friendly run so I look forward to that. Entering into the race, you hear so many negative things about running a campaign or politics and that’s what I was expecting. But, it has not been like that at all.”