Newton chosen by NC Senate Republicans to be new majority leader

Paul Newton, R-Cabarrus, left, speaks while Sens. Chuck Edwards, R-Henderson, center, and Ralph Hise, R-Mitchell, stand at a news conference at the Legislative Building in Raleigh, N.C. on Wednesday, March 31, 2021. Newton is a primary sponsor of an elections measure heard in a Senate committee later Wednesday that in part would adjust deadlines to request absentee ballots and to turn them in to county election offices (AP Photo/Gary D. Robertson)

RALEIGH — The 30-member N.C. Senate Republican caucus elected Cabarrus County state Sen. Paul Newton to be their new majority leader in the upcoming 2023-24 legislative biennium on Monday. Newton, a retired Duke Energy executive, will take the reins following the retirement of state Sen. Kathy Harrington (R-Gaston). 

“This is a great honor. I’m so appreciative of the support I have received from my colleagues and am ready to build on our prior success of lowering taxes, improving the quality of education, and spending responsibly,” Newton said in a statement. 

The Republicans kept Senate Leader Phil Berger (R-Eden) as the chamber’s president pro tempore for a sixth consecutive term. Berger said Newton “is a leader within our caucus and acutely aware of what policies are needed to improve our state, and we will all benefit from having him serve as our Majority Leader.” 

In addition to Newton’s elevation to majority leader, state Sen. Ralph Hise (R-Mitchell) will be deputy
president pro tempore, state Sens. Tom McInnis (R-Moore) and Jim Perry (R-Lenoir) will be the Senate whips, and state Sen. Carl Ford (R-Rowan) will return as caucus liaison.