By Elena Schneider (Politico) –
Rep. Robert Pittenger conceded the Republican nomination in North Carolina’s 9th District to opponent Mark Harris on Tuesday night, becoming the first congressman defeated in a primary in 2018.
Harris, a pastor who also ran in the 2016 primary, had 48.5 percent of the vote to Pittenger’s 46.2 percent with 99.5 percent of precincts reporting.
“I’ve called Mark Harris and I’ve conceded the race,” Pittenger said, after thanking his family and supporters. “I wish him the best.”
Pittenger, who was first elected in 2012, nearly lost to Harris in 2016, squeaking by with a 134-vote margin. At the time, Pittenger was under federal investigation for allegedly transferring money to his 2012 campaign from his real estate company – which Harris hammered the congressman for in 2016.