Mark Harris announced on Tuesday that he will not run in the state-mandated new election for North Carolina’s Ninth Congressional District.
“Given my health situation, the need to regain full strength, and the timing of this surgery the last week of March, I have decided not to file in the new election for Congressional District 9,” Harris wrote in a statement.
The announcement was expected—in addition to a week of testimony that left Harris looking foolishly arrogant at best regarding his hiring of Leslie McCrae Dowless’ election-fraud specialists at the Red Dome Group, the Baptist pastor has been dealing with a serious bacterial infection that hospitalized him in December. Harris wrote in his statement that he has a surgery scheduled for the last week of March and that he owed it to his family to spend all his energy healing—it is unclear if his “arrogant” and “judgmental” son, John, is included.
Harris also used his statement to promote the campaign of Union County Commissioner Stony Rushing, a member of the Republican Party. The gun-range owner and federally licensed firearms dealer has served several terms on the board, first from 2002 to 2006, then again when he was elected in 2014. He is exactly the candidate you expect a man like Harris to endorse.
Rushing, via his Facebook page, has spent the past two months constantly trying to throw cold water on the investigation and board hearings into the now-confirmed reports of election fraud. In late December, Rushing wrote on his Facebook page the investigation into the Ninth District was “a political coup by the State Board and the Democrat leaders on that board.” He followed that post up with one featuring this meme:
All around, great stuff. Beyond Rushing, it is currently unclear who will be interested in running for the Republican Party in the new election—on Monday, former governor and all-around conservative nightmare Pat McCrory announced on his AM radio show that he will be saving his next campaign for either a gubernatorial run or for 2022, when Sen. Richard Burr steps down. The Democratic candidate, Dan McCready, has committed to running again for the seat he narrowly lost to Harris in the November 2018 election.
You can read Harris’ full statement below.