Rep. Chris Millis lone local GOP in House not endorsing Tillis - WNCN: News, Weather

Rep. Millis lone local state House GOP member not endorsing Tillis for U.S. Senate

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Rep. Chris Millis (Source: Rep. Chris Millis (Source:

HAMPSTEAD, NC (WECT) – Rep. Chris Millis (R-Pender County) is the only local Republican member of the NC House not to endorse House Speaker Thom Tillis (R-Mecklenberg) in his bid for U.S. Senate. Tillis is one of eight candidates who have filed to run for the seat in the May primary election.

An email from Tillis' campaign listed several local House and Senate members who have recently or previously endorsed his candidacy, including Rep. Rick Catlin (R-New Hanover), Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover) and Rep. Frank Iler (R-Brunswick). When reached by phone on Monday each one confirmed their backing of Tillis in the crowded GOP primary field.

However, Millis said he has not endorsed Tillis or any other candidate in the race, and sent a statement regarding his decision: 

"This US Senate election is vital to the voice and the vote of the citizens of our State and Nation to have elected officials in Washington who will stand for principles over politics…who are bold beyond their own political advancement to stand for the very Founding Principles that made our Nation great.  Out of the respect for the citizens that I have the privilege to represent, I will not dampen their individual voices by endorsing a candidate that I am not confident that meets the benchmark that I have articulated.  As this race progresses I will continue to examine closely the credentials of each candidate, so that I may be confident in who will represent the best interest of the people by way of a Federal government limited to its proper role."

Millis was first elected to the state House in 2012, when former Rep. Carolyn Justice decided not to run for re-election.

The email from Tillis' campaign also listed Sen. Thom Goolsby (R-New Hanover) and Sen. Bill Rabon (R-Brunswick) as having endorsed the Speaker's candidacy. Sen. Rabon confirmed his support when reached on Monday. Sen. Goolsby has not yet returned a phone call.

Copyright 2014 WECT. All rights reserved.

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