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Republicans Lead Judicial Races

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Republicans hold early leads in races for twoseats on the state Supreme Court and five on the Court of Appeals.

In the Supreme Court races, unofficial returns showed Republicanincumbent Robert Orr leading Democrat Bob Hunter, while challengerEdward Brady led Democratic incumbent G.K. Butterfield.

The most contentious race pitted Orr against Hunter, currentlyon the Court of Appeals. Both men have been investigated by thestate's Judicial Standards Commission.

Unofficial returns show Republicans leading in four of fiveappeals court races.

Republicans had a 5-2 majority on the Supreme Court andDemocrats a 12-3 majority on the Court of Appeals going into theelection.

A law approved by the General Assembly this year will makefuture elections nonpartisan, meaning the candidates' partyaffiliation won't show up on the ballot.

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