Richard Burr Wards Off Well-Funded Oppоnent In Nоrth Carоlina Senate Race

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Senator Richard M. Burr of during a debate last month with Deborah Ross, his Democratic challenger.

Gerry Broome/Associated Press

RALEIGH, N.C. — Senator Richard M. Burr held off a well-funded challenge on Tuesday from Deborah Ross, a Democratic former state director of the American Civil Liberties Union who sought to portray the incumbent, a 20-year Republican veteran of the House and Senate, as an out-of-touch Washington insider.

Ms. Ross, 53, a lawyer who served from 2003 to 2013 in the State House of Representatives, blasted Mr. Burr, 60, early in the race as a self-dealing politician who exemplified a dysfunctional Washington. She also criticized him for continuing to support Donald J. Trump after his vulgar comments about women became public, and for being named to Mr. Trump’s “national security advisory council.”

Late in the campaign, Ms. Ross called attention to an Oct. 29 recording of Mr. Burr in which he said he was “a little bit shocked” that a National Rifle Association magazine with a picture of Hillary Clinton on it did not have a bull’s-eye over the candidate. On the tape, Mr. Burr also vowed that if Mrs. Clinton were elected, he would work to keep her from filling the vacancy on the Supreme Court.

Mr. Burr, known for wearing shoes without socks in the Senate, worried some Republican leaders with his decidedly mellow attitude toward campaigning. But both sides viewed Ms. Ross as vulnerable because of her A.C.L.U. background, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee blanketed the airwaves with ads claiming that Ms. Ross opposed a state sex offender registry, an allegation Ms. Ross strongly rebutted.

In a state with numerous military bases and veterans, Mr. Burr, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, emphasized his national security credentials, trumpeting, among other things, a bill he had sponsored that would prevent President Obama from closing the detention center at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.


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