With the inauguration neatly out of the way, thoughts turn to the next horse race — Senator Kay Hagan’s re-election bid.
Hagan had $1.3 million in cash on hand at the end of the third quarter of 2012. Her year end report is due soon. With the seat once occupied by Jesse Helms on the list of those Republicans intend to flip, Democrats, still smarting from the drubbing in this year’s election, are closing ranks.
Dome this morning points to a Politico story in which Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx talks about the election.

“I think it’s incumbent on North Carolina Democrats to do what national Republicans are doing, which is to huddle up and figure out what happened and to think about what the implications are and what needs to happen going forward to build a case for progressive politics in North Carolina,” said Foxx, who was in Washington for the Inauguration, as well as a meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

The Dome item also includes yet another reminder that the legislative session has a certain backdrop of intrigue due to the potential for a primary battle between the leaders of the state House and Senate.

A number of Republicans are already expressing various levels of interest in challenging Hagan, including House Speaker Thom Tillis and state Sen. Leader Phil Berger.

Congresswoman Renee Ellmers of Dunn, whose name is also being mentioned, is beginning to move around the state. She is, for example, scheduled to speak at the Gaston County Lincoln Day Dinner in Gastonia on Feb 23.

Dome — Foxx, Charlotte mayor, says Dems gearing up to defend Hagan

Politico: Foxx: Hagan race a test for North Carolina Democrats