As many as four new Democrats could join NC congressional delegation

State Sen. Jeff Jackson, D-Mecklenburg, speaks to students while campaigning at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C., Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021. Jackson announced on Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021, that he would end his campaign for the Democratic nomination for a U.S. Senate seat next year. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

RALEIGH — The combination of retirements and new court-drawn interim congressional map could send as many as four new Democrats from North Carolina to Congress.

The announced retirements of U.S. Reps. G.K. Butterfield and David Price had already opened two seats held for decades by the two Democrats. The new court-drawn map also creates a New Democratic district in eastern Mecklenburg County and a tossup district containing the fast-growing areas of southern Wake County and all of Johnston County.

The new 13th Congressional district, centered in southern Wake and Johnston, will see a rush of candidates on both sides. Already, Democratic Wake County state Sen. Wiley Nickel announced he would run for that seat, abandoning the safe district Price is retiring. Republicans running in that district include many who had already announced their intention to run including Johnston County businessman DeVan Barbour, Johnston County attorney Kelly Daughtry, and Wake County resident Chad Slotta.

In the new 14th Congressional District, the court-drawn map bisects Mecklenburg County diagonally from the northwest to the southeast, and takes in much of western Gaston County.

Many Democrats point to former U.S. Senate candidate Jeff Jackson as a strong competitor in that district and Jackson says he is actively considering a run.