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Buying Time 2012: North Carolina

This page features North Carolina  judicial ads of 2012.

Published: October 19, 2012

For inform­a­tion on North Caro­lin­a’s spend­ing, and all other tele­vi­sion spend­ing in state supreme court races, click here.

This year, voters filled a single seat on the North Caro­lina Supreme Court. Incum­bent Justice Paul Newby was running against Court of Appeals Judge Samuel Ervin IV. Both candid­ates accep­ted public finan­cing, but there was a huge surge in outside spend­ing in support of Justice Newby. Outside groups were respons­ible for over 85 percent of total TV spend­ing. The general elec­tion was held on Novem­ber 6, and Justice Paul Newby won re-elec­tion.

North Caro­lina selec­ted judges in partisan elec­tions through the 2000 elec­tion cycle. That year, North Caro­lin­a’s Supreme Court campaign exceeded $1 million in spend­ing for the first time, and the North Caro­lina legis­lature respon­ded by passing the Judi­cial Campaign Reform Act in 2002. This law replaced partisan elec­tions with non-partisan judi­cial races and imple­men­ted a program of public finan­cing for appel­late judges. Although the public finan­cing program has been a success, the program was repealed in August 2013. 

Click here to return to the Buying Time — 2012 Homepage.


Novem­ber 2, 2012 – Can We Trust Ervin 

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An ad by Justice for All NC asking, “Sam Ervin the fourth, can we trust him to be a fair judge?”

Octo­ber 29, 2012 – Rarely Agree

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An ad by the North Caro­lina Judi­cial Coali­tion saying, “Judge Paul Newby is above the polit­ical fray.”

Octo­ber 29, 2012 – My Grand­father

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An ad by Sam Ervin saying, “There is no place in our courts for partisan polit­ics or ideo­logy.”

Octo­ber 17, 2012 – Court for Sale

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An ad from Sam Ervin saying, “inde­pend­ent groups are spend­ing thou­sands to buy a seat on the state’s highest court.”

Octo­ber 16, 2012 – Citizen Lawyer

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An ad from Paul Newby on his endorse­ments and “honest, conser­vat­ive lead­er­ship.”

Octo­ber 12, 2012 – Crim­in­als Beware

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An ad by the North Caro­lina Judi­cial Coali­tion support­ing Paul Newby saying, “Crim­in­als best beware.”