Longtime Mecklenburg County Commissioner Pat Cotham loses primary race

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Mecklenburg County Commissioner Pat Cotham lost her primary race Tuesday night. She sat down with Channel 9′s Joe Bruno to talk about the sudden change.


Cotham has been in office since 2012, but come November, she will no longer be on the Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners.

The Democrat came in behind newcomer Yvette Townsend-Ingram by several thousand votes for the third at-large seat.

Cotham was a pivotal player when Charlotte hosted the Democratic National Convention in 2012.

In her conversation with Bruno, Cotham said she wasn’t surprised by the loss. She didn’t receive an endorsement from the local Black Political Caucus, and last year, the Cotham family received backlash after Tricia Cotham switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party, giving the Republicans a supermajority in the North Carolina State House.

READ MORE: NC State Rep. Tricia Cotham switches to Republican Party

“Do you believe you lost your election because your daughter switched political parties?” Bruno asked.

“No, I think it was many factors,” she said.

Cotham said ever since her daughter changed parties, she and her family have been living in fear; especially her grandchildren.

“My younger grandson -- months ago, I was taking him to school, he got in my car, he looked at me and said, ‘Grandma, are the Democrats that don’t like mommy, are they going to shoot her?’” she told Bruno.

Cotham said she had a tough time answering the question because it was something she thought about as well. Despite it all, she makes no apologies for standing by her daughter after her party switch.

“My daughter is a grown woman,” Cotham said. “She made a decision that was right for her.”

But she has no plans to do the same.

“I can tell you that I have been a Democrat my whole life,” she said. “My term will end at the end of November. I do not plan on any changes. When I leave the last board meeting, I will be a Democrat. That’s all I can tell you right now.”

Keep updated with the latest election results at this link.

(WATCH: Mecklenburg County commissioners unanimously pass resolution supporting Israel)