LUMBERTON — On Tuesday, Robeson voters will choose who they want representing North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District, of which they became a part just eight months ago.
The 9th District is represented in the U.S. House of Representatives by Robert Pittenger, who is looking to fend of Charlotte businessman Christian Cano in his bid for re-election to a seat that now represents a long swath along the North and South Carolina border.
Robeson County had been part of the 8th District, represented by Richard Hudson, but was placed in the 9th when a court ordered that the state’s congressional districts be redrawn because two were found to be illegally gerrymandered. The new 9th District includes Union, Anson, Richmond, Scotland, Robeson, and parts of Bladen, Cumberland and Mecklenburg counties.
Pittenger previously served three terms in the state Senate and has represented the 9th District since 2013. He serves on the House Financial Services Committee and on subcommittees for the Task Force to Investigate Terrorism Financing, of which he is vice chairman; Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit; and Monetary Policy and Trade. He chairs the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare.
He supports reducing the size of government and returning power to states. Pittenger made several stops in Robeson before the primary and also visited Lumberton in the wake of Hurricane Matthew.
“My role in Congress is to assist the great leadership of Robeson to bring the county economic growth,” he said. “Endorsed by NRA, National Federation of Independent Business, national and state Right to Life groups, and a ‘Taxpayers Friend’ award from the American Conservative Union, I will represent Robeson County values while protecting the unborn, the taxpayer, the small business owner, and our Second Amendment right to bear arms,” he said ahead of the June primary.
Cano lives in South Charlotte and spent 20 years as a hotel manager and hospitality consultant. According to his campaign website, he is now developing a line of natural pet products. Cano supports the Affordable Care Act, improving access to quality education, is pro-choice, considers climate change “one of the deadliest problems” facing the world today and supports overturning the Citizens United court ruling that allows unlimited spending on ads and other tools to influence voters, among other policy stances.
During the June primary, Pittenger’s opponent Mark Harris won the majority of the votes in Robeson County, with Pittenger winning 23 percent. Statewide, Pittenger held a small lead over Harris, with a .5 percent vote margin triggering a recount that remained in Pittenger’s favor. Cano was unopposed in the primary.
Sarah Willets can be reached at 910-816-1974 or on Twitter @Sarah_Willets.