you're reading...

Cornelius News

NC Rep. John Bradford, a Cornelius resident, plans to run for Congress

Ann Bradford with her son John Bradford meet voters at Cornelius Town Hall

[Update 11:30 am Dec. 11] Dec. 8. By Dave Yochum. Four months after US Rep. Dan Bishop announced plans to run for state attorney general rather than seek another term in Congress, NC Rep. John Bradford says he will run for Bishop’s seat.

It turns out that A.J. Daoud, a former NCGOP district chairman who was running for state auditor, changed his mind and said he would run in the GOP primary for treasurer instead.

Bradford, who represents District 98 in the NC House of Representatives, had already announced plans to run for NC Treasurer, so this is a change of course for the former Cornelius Town Board member and entrepreneur.

Separately, former Cornelius Mayor Jeff Tarte has announced plans to run for NC Auditor.

Bradford could not be reached for comment but he has often told supporters he hoped to one day run successfully for a national office.

This one is the 8th Congressional District seat currently held by Bishop, who hails from Charlotte. Bishop went to Washington in 2019 by narrowly winning a special election, after sponsoring the controversial 2016 “bathroom bill.” He is a former Mecklenburg County commissioner as well.

The 8th district, which favors Republicans, includes Anson, Montgomery, Richmond, Scotland, Stanly, Union and parts of Cabarrus, Mecklenburg and Robeson counties.


GOP strategist Andy Yates, a Huntersville resident, said Republican primaries for open, safe Republican Congressional seats are some of the toughest elections out there.

Andy Yates

“They typically attract a large field of candidates, each of whom has their own natural constituency—ideological, geographic or both—and their own unique appeal to Republican primary voters,” Yates said.

“However, I think Rep. Bradford’s conservative track record, experience winning tough elections, and ability to self-fund have him well-positioned to be a front-runner in this race,” Yates explained.

These types of primaries often come down to who has the resources to effectively reach Republican primary voters across the district with their story and their message.

“There is no doubt in my mind Rep. Bradford will have the resources necessary to do just that,” Yates said.

NEW: How difficult is it to run in a Congressional District other than your own?

Yates responds: “It’s a little more difficult but not that much so or that unheard It’s happened several times in NC in the past, more often after redistricting when a member ends up in a different district but runs in their old district. You do all the same stuff. Opponents will try to make it a liability, but if handled right you can mitigate a lot of that. Also, Congressional Districts are large. Is there any real difference between having a Congressman who lives in your district but is an hour and half or more drive from you than a Congressman who lives outside your district but only 20 minutes from you?”