§ 163-106. Notices of candidacy; pledge; with whom filed; date for filing; withdrawal.
Overview of Statute
Section provides the procedure all candidates must take in order to be affiliated with the desired election.
(a) Notice and Pledge.–No one shall be voted for in a primary election without having filed a notice of candidacy with the appropriate board of elections, State or county, as required by this section and G.S. 163-106.1, 163-106.2, 163-106.3, 163-106.5, and 163-106.6. To this end every candidate for selection as the nominee of a political party shall file with and place in the possession of the board of elections specified in G.S. 163-106.2, a notice and pledge in the following form:
I hereby file notice as a candidate for nomination as ………… in the ………. party primary election to be held on …….., …… I affiliate with the ………. party, (and I certify that I am now registered on the registration records of the precinct in which I reside as an affiliate of the ………… party.)
I pledge that if I am defeated in the primary, I will not run for the same office as a write-in candidate in the next general election.
(Name of Candidate)
(Title of witness)”
Each candidate shall sign the notice of candidacy in the presence of the chairman or secretary of the board of elections, State or county, with which the candidate files. In the alternative, a candidate may have the candidate’s signature on the notice of candidacy acknowledged and certified to by an officer authorized to take acknowledgments and administer oaths, in which case the candidate may mail or deliver by commercial courier service the candidate’s notice of candidacy to the appropriate board of elections.
(b) Name of Candidate.–In signing the notice of candidacy the candidate shall use only that candidate’s legal name and may use any nickname by which he is commonly known. A candidate may also, in lieu of that candidate’s legal first name and legal middle initial or middle name (if any) sign a nickname, provided that the candidate appends to the notice of candidacy an affidavit that the candidate has been commonly known by that nickname for at least five years prior to the date of making the affidavit. The candidate shall also include with the affidavit the way that candidate’s name (as permitted by law) should be listed on the ballot if another candidate with the same last name files a notice of candidacy for that office.
(c) Agent’s Signature Invalid.–A notice of candidacy signed by an agent or any person other than the candidate shall be invalid.
(d) Forms Provided by State Board.–Prior to the date on which candidates may commence filing, the State Board of Elections shall print and furnish, at State expense, to each county board of elections a sufficient number of the notice of candidacy forms prescribed by this subsection for use by candidates required to file with county boards of elections.
(e) Disclosure of Felony Conviction.–At the same time the candidate files notice of candidacy under this section and G.S. 163-106.1, 163-106.2, 163-106.3, 163-106.5, and 163-106.6, the candidate shall file with the same office a statement answering the following question: “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?” The State Board of Elections shall adapt the notice of candidacy form to include the statement required by this subsection. The form shall make clear that a felony conviction need not be disclosed if the conviction was dismissed as a result of reversal on appeal or resulted in a pardon of innocence or expungement. The form shall require a candidate who answers “yes” to the question to provide the name of the offense, the date of conviction, the date of the restoration of citizenship rights, and the county and state of conviction. The form shall require the candidate to swear or affirm that the statements on the form are true, correct, and complete to the best of the candidate’s knowledge or belief. The form shall be available as a public record in the office of the board of elections where the candidate files notice of candidacy and shall contain an explanation that a prior felony conviction does not preclude holding elective office if the candidate’s rights of citizenship have been restored. This subsection shall also apply to individuals who become candidates for election by the people under G.S. 163-114, 163-122, 163-123, 163-98, 115C-37, 130A-50, Article 24 of this Chapter, or any other statute or local act. Those individuals shall complete the question at the time the documents are filed initiating their candidacy. The State Board of Elections shall adapt those documents to include the statement required by this subsection. If an individual does not complete the statement required by this subsection, the board of elections accepting the filing shall notify the individual of the omission, and the individual shall have 48 hours after notice to complete the statement. If the individual does not complete the statement at the time of filing or within 48 hours after the notice, the individual’s filing is not complete, the individual’s name shall not appear on the ballot as a candidate, and votes for the individual shall not be counted. It is a Class I felony to complete the form knowing that information as to felony conviction or restoration of citizenship is untrue. This subsection shall not apply to candidates required by G.S. 138A-22(f) to file Statements of Economic Interest.
(1967, c. 775, s. 1; c. 1063, s. 2; 1969, c. 44, s. 83; c. 1190, s. 56; 1971, cc. 189, 675, 798; 1973, c. 47, s. 2; c. 793, s. 36; c. 862; 1975, c. 844, s. 2; 1977, c. 265, ss. 4, 5; c. 408, s. 2; c. 661, ss. 2, 3; 1979, c. 24; c. 411, s. 5; 1981, c. 32, ss. 1, 2; 1983, c. 330, s. 1; 1985, c. 472, s. 2; c. 558, s. 1; c. 759, s. 6; 1985 (Reg. Sess., 1986), c. 957, s. 1; 1987, c. 509, s. 13; c. 738, s. 124; 1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 1028, s. 1; 1993 (Reg. Sess., 1994), c. 762, s. 31; 1995, c. 243, s. 1; 1996, 2nd Ex. Sess., c. 9, s. 8; 1999-456, s. 59; 2001-403, s. 3; 2001-466, s. 5.1(a); 2002-158, ss. 8, 9; 2002-159, s. 55(a); 2006-155, s. 2; 2007-369, s. 1; 2009-47, s. 1; 2013-381, s. 21.1; 2014-111, s. 1(a); 2017-6, s. 3; 2016-125, s. 21(a); 2017-3, s. 5; 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
1. Definition for individual
The term “individual” means a single individual or more than one individual.
2. Definition for political party
The term “political party” means any political party organized or operating in this State, whether or not that party is recognized under the provisions of G.S. 163A-950. A special definition of “political party organization” that applies only in Part 2 of this Article is set forth in G.S. 163A-1475. An affiliated party committee is deemed a political party for this Article as set forth in G.S. 163A-1416 and G.S. 163A-1417.
3. Definition for board
The term “board” means the State Board with respect to all candidates for State, legislative, and judicial offices and the county board of elections with respect to all candidates for county and municipal offices. The term means the State Board with respect to all statewide referenda and the county board of elections conducting all local referenda.
4. Definition for Board
Board. – Any State board, commission, council, committee, task force,
authority, or similar public body, however denominated, created by statute or
executive order, as determined and designated by the State Board, except for
those public bodies that have only advisory authority.
5. Definition for State
“State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
6. Definition for person
The term “person” means any business entity, corporation, insurance company, labor union, or professional association.
7. Definition for Ballot
(Effective until January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal. The term “ballot” may include a paper ballot to be counted by hand, a paper ballot to be counted on an electronic
scanner, the face of a lever voting machine, the image on a direct record electronic unit, or a ballot used on any other voting system.
(Effective January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal, and is evidenced by an individual paper document that bears marks made by the voter by hand or through electronic
means, whether preprinted or printed in the voting enclosure.
8. Definition for Office
(4) Office. – The elected office for which the candidate has filed or petitioned.
(2006-155, s. 1; 2006-259, s. 48(a); 2017-6, s. 3.)
9. Definition for election
The term “election” means any general or special election, a first or second primary, a run-off election, or an election to fill a vacancy. The term “election” shall not include any local or statewide referendum.
10. Definition for Election
“Election” means the event in which voters cast votes in ballot items concerning proposals or candidates for office in this State or the United States. The term includes primaries, general elections, referenda, and special elections.
11. Definition for candidate
The term “candidate” means any individual who, with respect to a public office listed in G.S. 163A-1411(80), has taken positive action for the purpose of bringing about that individual’s nomination, retention, or election to public office. Examples of positive action include any of the following:
a. Filing a notice of candidacy, filing a notice to be retained, or a petition requesting to be a candidate.
b. Being certified as a nominee of a political party for a vacancy.
c. Otherwise qualifying as a candidate in a manner authorized by law.
d. Making a public announcement of a definite intent to run for public office in a particular election.
e. Receiving funds or making payments or giving the consent for anyone else to receive funds or transfer anything of value for the purpose of bringing about that individual’s nomination or election to office. Transferring anything of value includes incurring an obligation to transfer anything of value. Status as a candidate for the purpose of this Article continues if the individual is receiving contributions to repay loans or cover a deficit or is making expenditures to satisfy obligations from an election already held. Special definitions of “candidate” and “candidate campaign committee” that apply only in Part 2 of this Article are set forth in G.S. 163A-1475.
12. Definition for Candidate
“Candidate” means any individual who, with respect to a public office listed in G.S. 163A-1411(80), has filed a notice of candidacy, notice of retention, or a petition requesting to be a candidate, or has been certified as a nominee of a political party for a vacancy, or has otherwise qualified as a candidate in a manner authorized by law, or has filed a statement of organization under G.S. 163A-1412 and is required to file periodic financial disclosure statements under G.S. 163A-1418.
North Carolina Cases
Case Name: Comer v. Ammons
Citation: 522 S.E.2d 77
Case PDF: ComervAmmons
Case Summary: Voter brought challenge under N.C. Const. art. I, § 19 and art. VI, § 9 that N.C. Gen. State § 163-323 and -106 were unconstitutional. The statutes which permitted the defendant judges to simultaneously run for superior court judgeship and district court judgeship was determined not to violate equal protection despite the benefit lawyers were granted unavailable to others. The court first denied the defendants' motion to dismiss because the Plaintiff challenged the constitutionality of the election statutes, not election results. Nonetheless the court found the Plaintiff failed to present a viable constitutional challenge, holding that the right to vote was not fundamental and thus affirmed the lower court's summary judgment. In conclusion, the court held the provisions of the State Constitution which prohibited a person from holding more than one office did not prevent a person from seeking election to more than one office.
Case Name: State ex rel. Martin v. Preston
Citation: 385 S.E.2d 473
Case PDF: Martinv.Preston
Case Summary: Statute which postponed election date for eight superior court judges for two years and for ninth judge for four years did not violate provision of Constitution stating that superior court judges shall hold office for term of eight years and until their successors are elected and qualified; legislature merely eliminated staggered terms within multi-seat judicial districts by creating one-time interim or hiatus between certain terms of office. Moreover the one-time delay in such judicial elections so as to eliminate staggered terms did not violate the right of citizens to vote which is guaranteed by the State Constitution. Nor does delaying election of superior court judges in certain judicial districts confer separate emolument upon incumbents which would be in violation of the State Constitution.
Case Name: States’ Rights Democratic Party v. State Bd. of Elections
Citation: 49 S.E.2d 379
Case Summary: Law governing creation of new political parties is subject to restrictions that such rules must not conflict with any provisions of existing statutory law, even if such restriction is not specifically annexed by statute, as the constitution forbids the legislature to delegate power to make law to any other body. Specifically, the notice of and opportunity to petition for the creation of a new political party are necessary to meet the constitutional requirement of "due process of law." Here the State Board of Elections regulations, which require voters in support of a new political party to file an attachment which disclose the requisite number of signed supporters who have not voted in primary election(s) of any exiting party during the year in which the new political party petition is signed cannot be sustained merely as an administrative effectiveness measure on behalf of the State Board. The State Board of Elections has the authority to determine the registration for creation of a new political party by examination of registration books through the collection of the county boards as a matter of administrative routine before calling on signers to prove signature of the requisite number of qualified voters. However, the Supreme Court cannot determine whether primary election laws impose on qualified voters a moral obligation to such party and to therefore refrain from signing statutory petition for the creation of a its new political party during the year in which such elections are held. Thus, the statute providing for the creation of new political parties confers a legal right on any qualified voted the sight to sign such petition, irrespective of whether he/she has participated in the primary election of such existing political party during the same year in which the petition was signed. [Judicial Action] Where a petition for the creation of a new political party shows to have been signed by at least 10,000 voters and otherwise mets every statutory requirement, the Superior Court shall grant a writ of mandamus ordering the State Board of Elections to cause names of new party's nominees for President and Vice-President on the official ballot in the general election.
Case Name: States’ Rights Democratic Party v. State Bd. of Elections
Citation: 229 N.C. 179
Case Summary: The State Board of Elections refused to print names of the political party candidates on grounds that the petitioners failed to comply with its self imposed governing rules and regulations. The court found that the Board's regulations conflicted with N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 163-126, 163-123 and thus were void as they attempted to establish that voting in the primary election of an existing political party disabled qualified electors to sign a petition for the creation of a new party during the same year which the primary was held. Furthermore, notice of, and opportunity for, hearing on petition for creation of new political party are necessary to meet constitutional requirement of "due process of law," which hears before it condemns, proceeds on inquiry, and renders judgement only after trial. In conclusion the court found the State Board of Elections was acting as a legislative body, rather than a regulatory power and thus invalidated its imposed regulations.
Case Name: Ingle v. State Bd. of Elections
Citation: 38 S.E.2d 566
Case PDF: Ingle v. State Board of Elections
Case Summary: Candidate filed a petition against the Board when it refused to place him on the official election ballot. The court concluded the candidate's notice of candidacy filed with the Board did not comply with governing North Carolina election provisions. Specifically, the candidate failed to designate which of the vacancies on the court he sought election. This failure amounted to a fatal defect in his notice, thus non-compliant with N.C. Gen. Statute § 163-147 which required specific designation. In conclusion, the court held the statute which required to candidate to provide such specific designation was not unconstitutional and thus the court affirmed the lower court's denial of the candidate's motion for summary judgement.
Case State: alabama
Case Name: Republican Party of North Carolina v. Hunt
Citation: 841 F.Supp. 722
Case PDF: Republican Party of N.C. v. Hunt
Case Summary: The Republican Party sued state officials, seeking relief from alleged illegal political gerrymandering regarding state judicial elections. Specifically, the Party and affiliated Party Officials, claimed the state judicial election division was biased against candidates from their party. The court ultimately granted the Plaintiff's a preliminary injunction as the Party would suffer irreparable injury if such injunctive relief was not granted. Furthermore, the burden on the state was minimal in light of the claims merits and in furtherance of public interest favoring democratic choice during an election. Accordingly, the court extended the deadline for filing notice of judicial office, and ordered the votes in the judicial elections be counted both statewide and pursuant to each judicial office's division and district thereby certifying the winners based on the district vote.
Case Name: Dunston v. Scott
Citation: 336 F.Supp. 206
Federal District Court: Eastern District of North Carolina
Case PDF: DunstonvScott
Case Summary: This was a class action brought on behalf of minority voters of North Carolina who sought declaratory judgment that three provisions of State election laws are unconstitutional as they are not compliant with the Voting Rights Act. Here the court held the challenged "anti-single shot law" was unconstitutional as it denied equal protection of the laws when it allowed voters to "single shot" vote in some areas of the while prohibiting this manner of voting in others. Furthermore, the state has not shown justification for this discrimination and fails to meet its burden. The state fails to offer any reason at all why full participation in this process is not to be desired in all counties and municipalities of North Carolina. Secondly, the Plaintiffs' contend the "numbered seat law" is unconstitutional when read in conjunction with the "single shot law." Here the court found that, regardless of legislative intent, they could not perceive justification for adopting the law for some districts while exempting others. In conclusion, the court held that as selectively adopted and applied the numbered seat law denies the voters of multi-member districts the equal protection afforded by the constitution. Therefore, its enforcement must be permanently enjoined and stripped as unconstitutional provisions.
Case Name: Haith v. Martin
Citation: 618 F.Supp. 410
Federal District Court: Eastern District of North Carolina, Raleigh Division
Case PDF: HaithvMartin
Case Summary: Merely because the elections laws deal with election of members of the judiciary, does not remove it from the ambit of preclearance requirement of the Voting Rights Act. Specifically, the State statutes which established a system of numbered seat elections for position of superior court judgeships in districts with two or more vacancies were not precleared as required by the Voting Rights Act. Accordingly, the plaintiff is entitled to the injunctive relief sought.
Case Name: Republican Party of North Carolina v. Martin
Citation: 980 F.2d 943
Federal Circuit Court: 4th Circuit Court
Case Summary: Matter challenging the method of election North Carolina Superior Court judges. The action was dismissed as the county board of elections have no constitutional power to independently place candidate(s) on the ballot in elections, nor could the county boards remove candidate(s) as they were merely acting in ministerial capacity and could only carry out its enumerated duties. [Judicial Action] The action challenging a method of electing North Carolina Superior Court judges was dismissed against the county board of elections as the county boards have no power to independently place candidate(s) on an election ballot. Moreover, the county boards could not remove candidates from such ballot, as they merely function in ministerial capacity and could only carry out those duties as detailed by statute.
Case Name: Brown v. North Carolina State Bd. of Elections
Citation: 394 F.Supp. 359
Federal District Court: W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
Case PDF: Brown v. NC State Bd of Elections
Case Summary: Alternative means of access to the general election ballot, by means of running as an independent or third-party candidate or conducting a write-in campaign to obtain nomination, did not vitiate constitutional challenge to a North Carolina statute which restricted access to the primary election ballot through requiring payment of a filing fee.