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1980 North Carolina gubernatorial election

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1980 North Carolina gubernatorial election

← 1976 November 4, 1980 1984 →
Jim Hunt as Lieutenant Governor.jpg
I. Beverly Lake Jr.jpg
Nominee Jim Hunt I. Beverly Lake
Party Democratic Republican
Popular vote 1,143,145 691,449
Percentage 61.88% 37.43%

NCCounties Gov80.svg
County Results
Hunt:      50-60%      60-70%      70-80%      80-90%
Lake:      50-60%      60-70%

Governor before election

Jim Hunt

Elected Governor

Jim Hunt

The 1980 North Carolina gubernatorial election was held on November 4, 1980. Despite North Carolina going to Ronald Reagan in the presidential race and the U.S. Senate race being won by a Republican (John P. East), popular Democratic Governor Jim Hunt won a second term in office in a landslide over Republican I. Beverly Lake. Hunt thus became the first governor of the state elected to a consecutive four-year term, following an amendment to the Constitution of North Carolina allowing such a run.[1]

Hunt's decision to run for a second term led to a challenge from former Democratic governor Robert W. Scott, but Hunt easily defeated the former governor in the Democratic primary.[2]

UNC-Chapel Hill journalism professor Ferrel Guillory wrote of this campaign: "Hunt campaigned as the activist governor that he had been through his first term. His campaign’s key points were: 1) limiting government growth even as he deployed government as a tool for improving citizens’ lives, particularly through education initiatives; 2) maintaining ties with the business community while also pushing to diversify the state’s economy; 3) expanding rights and opportunities for women and black people; and 4) responding to charges that he was a “big spender’’ by noting that he had persuaded the Legislature in 1979 to enact a modest income tax cut."[3]

General election results

1980 NC Governor Election Results[4]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Jim Hunt (Incumbent) 1,143,145 61.88%
Republican I. Beverly Lake 691,449 37.43% -16.47%
Libertarian Robert Y. Emory 9,552 0.54%
Socialist Workers Douglas A. Cooper 2,887 0.16%
Independent Others 53 0%
Turnout 1,847,086 100%


This page was last edited on 17 January 2021, at 05:35
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