Congressional District 12: Adams (D) vs. Wright (R)

Rating: Strong Democratic

Voter Registration by Race: 45% White, 44% Black, 7% Hispanic, 4% Other

Voter Registration by Party: 50% Democratic, 30% Unaffiliated, 20% Republican

2016 Presidential Election Result: 68% Clinton, 28% Trump, 3% Other

Located entirely within Mecklenburg County, CD-12 contains most of the city of Charlotte and a number of surrounding suburban towns. The district was drawn to pack in Democratic voters so surrounding districts would elect Republicans – CD-12 contains almost all of Charlotte’s racially diverse, solidly Democratic precincts, while the predominantly white, Republican-leaning precincts of south Charlotte and the suburban towns of Matthews and Mint Hill were drawn into the neighboring CD-09. Outside of Charlotte, CD-12 does contain the suburban towns of Cornelius, Davidson, and Huntersville north of the city and Pineville to its south, all of which are substantially less Democratic than the district as a whole. Overall, however, the diverse CD-12 is a bastion of Democratic strength, as GOP legislators intended – the district has voted Democratic in every statewide election for decades, and Democrats have a thirty-point voter registration advantage over Republicans. Moreover, Hillary Clinton won CD-12 by over forty points in 2016, only 0.02% away from her best district performance statewide.

2018 Candidates

Total Raised (2017-2018) Total Spent (2017-2018) Cash on Hand (June 2018) Debts Owed (June 2018)

Alma Adams


$399,011.78 $251,545.06 $254,321.98 $00.00

Paul Wright


$00.00 $00.00 $00.00



Congresswoman Alma Adams was first elected to represent CD-12 in 2014, winning a special election to fill the seat vacated by fellow Democrat Mel Watts upon his appointment as Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. At the time, the district stretched from predominantly African American portions of Charlotte to those in the Piedmont Triad cities of Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point – Adams, a High Point native, had served for two decades as a state representative from Greensboro. However, 2016 saw courts strike down CD-12 as a racial gerrymander that packed in African American voters to decrease their influence elsewhere, and the subsequently redrawn district was consolidated within Mecklenburg County. Rather than retire, Adams established a residency in Charlotte and ran for reelection. Despite facing six Democratic challengers who questioned her connections to the Charlotte area, she won the 2016 primary with 43% and was elected to a second full term that November.

This year, Adams – who won the 2018 Democratic primary with 86% against three opponents – faces Republican Paul Wright in the general election. Wright, a former superior court judge, won the three-way GOP primary with 43% of the district’s vote. He has raised no campaign funds and is running on a far-right platform – his campaign website condemns modern America as a “multicultural, polytheistic nation” that supports “false religions and false gods,” supports the establishment of Christianity as the official state religion, promotes the teaching of creationism in schools, and protests the 2003 Supreme Court ruling that struck down sodomy laws. Adams, whose growing community and political ties since moving to Charlotte were demonstrated by her overwhelming 2018 primary victory, is essentially guaranteed a third full term.


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