Paul Fogleman,

As campaigns intensify for the November elections, we learn how expensive it has become to mount an effective effort. And the totals released by candidates to the State Board of Elections point to very competitive season. Example: Attorney General Roy Cooper who is running for governor has raised over $9 million, besting the $6 million total raised by incumbent Pat McCrory. Former state senator Josh Stein is reporting over $2 million in the race to succeed Cooper—about 10 times more than raised by GOP Senator Buck Newton of Goldsboro. Former State Rep. Deborah Ross who is seeking to unseat U.S. Senator Richard Burr has pulled in $2 million more than her opponent.

These are just highlights. With over 30 incumbents in the House and Senate retiring, Republicans and Democrats are scrambling to maintain or regain the majority. Republicans who have held a super majority in both Chambers since 2010 are likely to keep control. But Democrats are seeking to gain enough seats to prevent veto overrides. They will have to gain seven House seats and three Senate seats to meet this goal.

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