Former federal prosecutor George Holding (’96) to represent 13th Congressional District

A tough-talking former federal prosecutor and Wake Forest law school alumni who wants to slash spending and shrink debt will represent Wilson County in the U.S. House.

Republican George Holding (’96) defeated Democrat Charles Malone in the race to represent the 13th Congressional District. The Associated Press declared Holding the winner with a 60-40 advantage as votes were still being counted Tuesday night. The race ended with Holding securing 57 percent of the vote.

“Clearly, the No. 1 issue for everyone is the economy and how we’re going to turn the economy around,” Holding said. “My philosophy is you’ve got to get a handle on government debt and you need to empower small businesses.”

Holding said his message of responsible government spending has resonated with voters in Wilson and surrounding counties.

“We’ve been working really hard going all over the district and I’ve been getting really good feedback in all parts of the district in every stop we’ve made,” he said. “This confirms the good feedback. It’s an honor to be able to serve the folks in the 13th District. The real hard work starts tomorrow.”

Malone expressed disappointment in the outcome, but he acknowledged “the people have spoken.”

“I’m disappointed, but we’ve done the best we could with the resources we had,” he said Tuesday night. “We had a good discussion of the issues, and democracy has run its course.”

Holding watched the votes come in with family and supporters at the Velvet Cloak Hotel in Raleigh.

“Someone came and got me in the other room and said the AP has called it, so I have a lot of congratulations from my family,” he said.

Holding said his first act as representative-elect will be assembling his constituent services staff.

“Everyone who works for me will understand that constituent services is job No. 1,” he said.

Holding is a former United States attorney for North Carolina’s eastern district. A Raleigh native, he earned his law degree from Wake Forest University and served on the Washington staff of conservative Sen. Jesse Helms.

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