WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Will Breazeale, Randy Crow and Ilario Pantano were all vying for the Republican nomination for the 7th Congressional District. In the end, it was Pantano who came out on top with 51 percent of the vote.
"We needed people to be out there and voting today," Pantano said. "We needed people to be expressing themselves. I think what we saw is despite the inclement weather, people were very determined to let their voices be heard, and I think that energy is going to propel us through to November, and in November I think we are gonna see some records breaking."
The closest challenge came from Breazelle, while Crow finished a distant third. Breazeale released a statement to WWAY late in the game with only one county not fully reporting, Breazeale said, "I am not conceding this race yet. There is still pockets left in some counties. If Pantano wins, I will not endorse or help him in his quest to beat Mike McIntyre. Pantano is a snake-oil salesman disguised as a Congressional candidate. I am a devoted Republican, but will not help Pantano beat Mike McIntyre. I love my country more and am a devoted American."
Pantano says he's looking forward to the race against the incumbent McIntyre. The Lumberton Democrat has claimed the Congressional seat for seven straight terms.
"Everybody's formidable, and everybody has a weakness," Pantano said. "I think, in this case, what we're looking at is a district that is very conservative, that sends a conservative message and wants conservative representation, and they don't feel like they are getting it right now. Washington has moved away. The party has abandoned Mike."