RALEIGH, (SGRToday.com) - Conventional wisdom was thrown on its ear Tuesday night as Republican Mark Walker handily defeated fellow Republican Phil Berger, Jr. for the 6th District nomination for Congress and the opportunity to replace retiring Congressman Howard Coble.
Walker garnered 60 percent of the vote to Berger's 40 percent.
Berger came in first in the May primary but on Tuesday failed to win his home county of Rockingham, as well as other counties in the district. He came close in Orange County, losing to Walker by just 2 percentage points.
Walker, a Baptist minister from Greensboro, told reporters, “We wouldn’t be very truthful if we told you we expected to win with 60 percent."
Berger, son of state Senate Leader Phil Berger, outraised and outspent Walker, but the minister's grassroots volunteers proved formidable.
Walker now faces Democrat Laura Fjeld in the general election.
Fjeld wasted no time calling Walker a "radical extremist who doesn't share the values of North Carolinians."
She invited what she termed "mainstream Republican voters" to join her campaign.