New Hanover County Commissioner Woody White announced Tuesday that he will not be running for United States Congress in next year’s election.
White, a Tea Party-supported Republican who was elected to the county board in 2012, decided not to challenge current Rep. David Rouzer, a fellow Republican who represents North Carolina’s 7th Congressional District. He previously ran against Rouzer in a GOP primary for the seat in May 2014 and lost.
“Over the last few months we received calls from people all over this district, state and country encouraging us to run again,” White said in a video statement on his website. “Because we care so deeply for this country, we have done our due diligence by listening to them and talking about it as a family, and we’ve concluded that the time is not right for another fight right now.”
White, an attorney by profession who is married with two teenage children, also served for six months as a North Carolina State Senator for the 9th District in 2004 when he was appointed to fill an unexpired term. In his video statement, White challenged Rouzer to do more for the nine-county district in Washington.
“In the meantime, I hope that Congressman Rouzer will find his voice in the nation’s capital,” said White. “I encourage David to fight for us, fight for our district and country, stand up, be heard, make a difference. It’s not enough to simply go through the motions and work only on re-election. Do something big. Lead us.”
Currently Rouzer has no challengers, Republican, Democrat or otherwise, for his seat. The candidate filing deadline is December 21, with the primary election on March 15 of next year and the general election on Nov. 8, 2016.
White served as chairman on the county board of commissioners from his election until last December, when current chair Jonathan Barfield was elected to that position. His term on the commission is set to expire in 2016. White has not yet decided whether he will run for re-election to that post but said he will be announcing his intentions within the next few weeks.
“Who knows what the future holds?” White said.