New Hanover County party leaders react to possible Lara Trump senate run in 2022

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — North Carolina Senator Richard Burr is under fire after voting to convict Former President Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial, resulting in his censure on Monday.

The senator has served in congress since 1994 and plans to retire next year, which raises questions about who will claim his seat.

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Speculation continues to grow that Wrightsville Beach native and the former president’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump may join the race.

New Hanover County Republican and Democratic Party leaders welcome Trump’s interest in the seat.

“We’re proud that a New Hanover native may be running for senate,” Democratic Party Chairman Richard Poole said.

“I think it would be really positive if that were to happen for Wilmington but also for North Carolina,” Republican Party Chairman Will Knecht said.

Democratic Party Chair Richard Poole takes a tongue-in-cheek approach, saying Trump is the most qualified member of her family to hold a seat in the senate.

“She studied to be a pastry chef and she’s accomplished at that,” Poole said. “She’s been a fitness trainer and briefly, before she got married to Eric Trump, she was an associate producer of a television show.”

On the contrary, Republican Party Chair Will Knecht says she likely learned a lot while Donald Trump was in office and she could bring a breath of fresh air to congress.

“Sometimes we get sick of politicians who are professional politicians,” Knecht said. “[Lara Trump is] someone who’s been in the trenches before and she has been at the president’s side, as an advisor to our former president so she understands the ins and outs.”

Though her loyalty to her father-in-law is a fault in Poole’s book.

“She bought into all the conspiracy theories and bought into Donald Trump’s effort to throw out the results of a free and fair election after 61 courts rejected them,” Poole said. “She was still all in with the ‘Stop the Steal’ program and that should disqualify her from service in the senate.”

Even if Lara Trump does not campaign for Burr’s seat, Knecht says republicans have quality candidates lined up, like Former Congressman Mark Walker.

“He’s a phenomenal conservative, a bridge-builder,” Knecht said. “He was the chairman of the Republican study committee, the number four man in the house, person in the house. Very well respected.”

Both Poole and Knecht can meet in the middle of the aisle and agree that you should get involved and get to know the candidates before you cast your vote.