ALERT: NC Gov. Perdue to announce she is not seeking re-election

Big news today from the battleground state of North Carolina:

Numerous sources say Gov. Bev Perdue will not seek re-election in 2012.

Perdue will turn 65 this month. Her likely opponent in the next campaign will be Pat McCrory, former Charlotte mayor and a Catawba College graduate.

Sources at the Associated Press are working on a story at this time.

The Raleigh News & Observer is reporting Perdue is expected to make an announcement this afternoon. The News & Observer is also reporting that Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton has about $600,000 in the bank, according to campaign finance reports.

Others likely to make a run include current Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx, Attorney General Roy Cooper and former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles.

State Rep. Bill Faison had earlier threatened to challenge Perdue.

I would not be shocked at all to see Mayor Foxx throw his hat into the ring, especially considering he is basking in the glow of being one of the main point-men for the Democrat National Convention, which will take place here in Charlotte in September. That will go over very well in the state’s more liberal cities, like Charlotte and Raleigh but will give him problems in rural areas. A Foxx run and Democrat primary win would also provide for an interesting potential fall match-up, possibly pitting him – the current Mayor – against former multi-term Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (R), who is supposed to kick his campaign game into high gear next week.

McCrory ran against Perdue in 2008 and lost. I think he would have given her a run for her money this year, but her dropping out has just sweetened the pot quite a bit and provided the NCGOP with a primetime pick-up opportunity. Let’s hope that, unlike the national GOP is doing, the locals don’t blow it.

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