North Carolinians made their choice in the 13th Congressional District Republican runoff last night. And most of them went with the guy whose take on the worst environmental disaster in the nation’s history makes Oliver Stone’s JFK look like a Ken Burns documentary.
Bill Randall, a tea partier who made headlines with his suggestion that BP and the federal government worked together to blow up the Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig in April, decisively won last night’s runoff, defeating magazine publisher (and relatively more mainstream Republican) Bernie Reeves by a margin of 59% to 41%. Randall will now carry his party’s flag to the general election, where he’ll face incumbent Rep. Brad Miller (D).It’s a safe Democratic seat, not one that anyone really expects Miller to lose. But Randall’s presence on the campaign trail could pose something of an embarrassing problem for Republicans in North Carolina. Democrats in the state already plan to hit Republicans on oil drilling politics in the fall. Randall’s take on the spill could bring up uncomfortable memories for Republicans of classic spill-related gaffes from former FEMA director Michael Brown and Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX).
The man Randall defeated last night in the Republican primary has certainly suggested that Randall’s stances could be a problem for Republicans in the fall. But he said that when it comes to Republicans in NC-13, the most important thing to remember is caveat emptor.
“”The people have spoken,” Reeves told the Raleigh, NC News & Observer. “It’s sort of like anarchy out there, where qualifications and credentials don’t matter.”
Randall did not immediately respond to a request for comment this morning.