RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Nearly a month after the election, Tuesday night Roy Cooper got his opportunity for a victory party.
Republican incumbent Pat McCrory conceded the governor’s race to Cooper Monday.
“Finally,” was the one word that Cooper used Tuesday night to sum up weeks of vote counting and a hard-fought campaign.
“It is the greatest honor of my life to stand before you as the governor-elect of our great state,” Cooper said.
He held the rally with supporters at the McKimmon Center in Raleigh.
He told them he will be a governor for everyone, including those who did not vote for him.
“In order to face our challenges and solve our problems, it will require us to listen to each other. All of us,” Cooper said.
Cooper talked about wanting to raise wages for everyday North Carolinians and to ensure children receive the best education.
And, he addressed a key part of his campaign.
“With this election, North Carolina is on its way to repairing its reputation. Let’s finish the job and repeal House Bill 2,” he said.
To do that, Cooper will need help from the Republican-led General Assembly, which could override a gubernatorial veto.
His supporters say Cooper will work with the General Assembly and they say Cooper’s speech inspired them.
“It gave me hope. This year has been really difficult and this is the one bright spot in the whole election,” said Kathleen Eller of Alamance County.
The transition process has already started for Cooper and he should say something in the coming days and weeks about his cabinet picks.
Prior to Cooper speaking, Democrat Josh Stein addressed the audience.
With Republican Buck Newton conceding, the state’s Attorney General-elect is now Stein.
“I ran to be an independent voice for the people of North Carolina, not for the powerful and politically-connected special interests. And when I say the people, I mean all of the people of North Carolina,” Stein said.
Stein says he will crack down on violent crime, protect seniors and consumers from scam artists and will confront the opioid epidemic.