Thom Tillis endors­es Bill Gra­ham for next North Car­oli­na gov­er­nor

Sen. Thom Tillis (R‑NC) dealt a blow to North Car­oli­na GOP guber­na­to­r­i­al front-run­ner Mark Robin­son this week by endors­ing Robin­son’s top chal­lenger Bill Gra­ham, an afflu­ent busi­ness­man.
Gra­ham and Robin­son, who are seek­ing the Repub­li­can nom­i­na­tion for North Car­oli­na gov­er­nor, are hop­ing to replace Gov. Roy Coop­er (D‑NC) next year. Coop­er can­not seek reelec­tion because he has reached the state’s term lim­it.
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“I intend to do every­thing I can to help him get the nom­i­na­tion,” Tillis told the Nation­al Review of Gra­ham. “It’s not a per­son­al­i­ty thing to me or per­son­al thing. I’m look­ing at two resumes and there’s a stark con­trast in capa­bil­i­ties.”
Tillis said his endorse­ment of Gra­ham came down to “expe­ri­ence” rather than pol­i­tics and per­son­al­i­ty. How­ev­er, some Repub­li­cans have expressed con­cerns that if Robin­son is the GOP nom­i­nee, he would lose the gen­er­al elec­tion because of con­tro­ver­sial state­ments he has made in the past about gay peo­ple and the film Black Pan­ther.
“Mark Robinson’s a good enough guy. I don’t know him that well,” Tillis said. “But he has vir­tu­al­ly no leg­isla­tive expe­ri­ence, very lit­tle busi­ness expe­ri­ence. We’re a very, …