RALEIGH, N.C. — Congressman Mike McIntyre won re-election to his 7th District seat Wednesday after a recount showed that Republican David Rouzer failed to cut into his lead.
McIntyre led Rouzer by 655 votes following the Nov. 16 canvass of the 12 counties in the congressional district. With recounts completed as of 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, McIntyre's lead diminished by one vote, said Gary Bartlett, executive director of the State Board of Elections.
Rouzer called for the recount last week because he trailed by less than 1 percent of the 337,000 votes cast in the race.
The state senator from Johnston County said he is now turning his attention away from the campaign trail.
"To all of those who have encouraged me to run again in 2014, your sincerity means a lot," Rouzer said in a statement Wednesday night. "With the Christmas season upon us, I am setting any thoughts of my political future to the side, refocusing on growing my distributorship and consulting businesses, while enjoying the farm and the holidays with family and friends."
After machine recounts, the trailing candidate can demand that votes be recounted by hand using a sample equal to a small percentage of the precincts in each district. A hand recount would then expand to an entire district if the altered margin could be extrapolated to conclude the second-place candidate could overcome the leader.
In recent state history, recounts rarely have flipped the outcome of a race.