North Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District is a long way from the north country, but the primary on Tuesday mattered to U.S. Rep. Elise M. Stefanik, R-Schuylerville.
Ms. Stefanik, and her organization E-PAC, which aims to elect more Republican women to the House, backed candidate Joan Perry, a pediatrician. But Dr. Perry lost on Tuesday to Greg Murphy, a current state representative and urologist. Dr. Perry gained just 40.3 percent of the vote to Dr. Murphy’s 59.7 percent.
“Thanks to @drjoanperry for having the courage to raise your hand and step into the arena. I am proud to have supported your campaign alongside all of my -GOPWomen colleagues,” Ms. Stefanik tweeted Tuesday after the results came out. “While this special election was an uphill climb, we have a historic - of strong -GOPWomen stepping up to run in the 2020 cycle. We must ensure that our Party is reflective of the American people. And I will continue to focus on this mission. Clearly there’s a lot more work to do!”
The Republican primary in a heavily Republican district was held after the death of incumbent Rep. Walter B. Jones in February.
Dr. Perry could have provided an early win for Ms. Stefanik’s PAC, formed after the 2018 election in which the Republican House caucus lost 10 women. The special election will be held this year instead of 2020 when all House seats will be up for election once more, and Ms. Stefanik had been vocal in her support of Dr. Perry.
“I’m really excited about Joan Perry, who is a very viable candidate, and we are hoping to get her across the finish line in the upcoming primary,” Ms. Stefanik told the Times in May when asked about E-PAC activities.