North Carolina Senate

Last updated

North Carolina Senate
North Carolina General Assembly
Seal of North Carolina.svg
Term limits
New session started
January 1, 2021
Mark Robinson (R)
since January 3, 2021
President pro tempore
Phil Berger (R)
since January 26, 2011
Majority Leader
Kathy Harrington (R)
since January 1, 2021
Minority Leader
Dan Blue (D)
since March 5, 2014 [1]
Political groups
  •   Republican (28)


Length of term
2 years
Last election
November 3, 2020
(50 seats)
Next election
November 8, 2022
(50 seats)
Meeting place
Senate chamber
North Carolina Legislative Building
Raleigh, North Carolina, United States
North Carolina Constitution

The North Carolina Senate is the upper chamber of the North Carolina General Assembly, which along with the North Carolina House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the state legislature of North Carolina.


The Senate's prerogatives and powers are similar to those of the other house, the House of Representatives. Its members do, however, represent districts that are larger than those of their colleagues in the House. The President of the Senate is the Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina, but the Lt. Governor has very limited powers and only votes to break a tie. Before the office of Lt. Governor was created in 1868, the Senate was presided over by a "Speaker." After the 1988 election of James Carson Gardner, the first Republican Lt. Governor since Reconstruction, Democrats in control of the Senate shifted most of the power held by the Lt. Governor to the senator who is elected President Pro Tempore (or Pro-Tem). The President Pro Tempore appoints members to standing committees of the Senate, and holds great sway over bills.

According to the state constitution, the Senate is also the "Court for the Trial of Impeachments". The House of Representatives has the power to impeach state officials, after which the Senate holds a trial, as in the federal system. If the Governor or Lt. Governor is the official who has been impeached, the Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court presides.


The qualifications to be a senator are found in the state Constitution: "Each Senator, at the time of his election, shall be not less than 25 years of age, shall be a qualified voter of the State, and shall have resided in the State as a citizen for two years and in the district for which he is chosen for one year immediately preceding his election."

2021–22 composition

(shading indicates majority caucus)
Republican Democratic Vacant
End of (2017–18) legislature3515500
Beginning of previous (2019–20) legislature2921500
End of previous (2019–20) legislature2920501
Beginning of current (2021–22) legislature2821501
Since January 11, 20212822500
Latest voting share


North Carolina Senate [2] Officers
Lieutenant Governor / President of the Senate Mark Robinson Republican
President Pro Tempore Phil Berger Republican
Deputy President Pro Tempore Ralph Hise Republican
Majority Leader Kathy Harrington Republican
Majority Whip Jim Perry Republican
Joint Majority Caucus Leader Norman Sanderson Republican
Minority Leader Dan Blue Democratic
Minority Whip Jay Chaudhuri Democratic
Minority Caucus Secretary Ben Clark Democratic


DistrictFull Name of SenatorPartyResidenceCounties RepresentedFirst elected
1 Bob Steinburg Republican Edenton Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Hyde,
Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell, Washington
2 Norman Sanderson Republican Minnesott Beach Carteret, Craven, Pamlico 2012
3 Ernestine Bazemore Democratic Aulander Beaufort, Bertie, Martin, Northampton, Vance, Warren 2020
4 Toby Fitch Democratic Wilson Edgecombe, Halifax, Wilson 2018↑
5 Donald G. Davis Democratic Greenville Greene, Pitt 2012
6 Michael Lazzara Republican Jacksonville Jones, Onslow 2020
7 Jim Perry Republican Kinston Lenoir, Wayne 2019↑
8 Bill Rabon Republican Winnabow Bladen, Brunswick, New Hanover (part), Pender 2010
9 Michael Lee Republican Wilmington New Hanover (part)2020
10 Brent Jackson Republican Autryville Duplin, Johnston (part), Samson 2010
11 Lisa Stone Barnes Republican Spring Hope Johnston (part), Nash 2020
12 Jim Burgin Republican Angier Harnett, Johnston (part), Lee 2018
13 Danny Britt Republican Lumberton Columbus, Robeson 2016
14 Dan Blue Democratic Raleigh Wake (part)2009↑
15 Jay Chaudhuri Democratic Raleigh Wake (part)2016↑
16 Wiley Nickel Democratic Cary Wake (part)2018
17 Sydney Batch Democratic Apex Wake (part)2021↑
18 Sarah Crawford Democratic Raleigh Franklin, Wake (part)2020
19 Kirk deViere Democratic Fayetteville Cumberland (part)2018
20 Natalie Murdock Democratic Durham Durham (part)2020↑
21 Ben Clark Democratic Raeford Cumberland (part), Hoke 2012
22 Mike Woodard Democratic Durham Durham (part), Granville, Person 2012
23 Valerie Foushee Democratic Hillsborough Chatham, Orange 2013↑
24 Amy Galey Republican Burlington Alamance, Guilford (part)2020
25 Tom McInnis Republican Ellerbe Anson, Moore, Richmond, Scotland 2014
26David W. Craven Jr.Republican Asheboro Guilford (part), Randolph 2020↑
27 Michael Garrett Democratic Greensboro Guilford (part)2018
28 Gladys Robinson Democratic Greensboro Guilford (part)2010
29 Steve Jarvis Republican Lexington Davidson, Montgomery 2020
30 Phil Berger Republican Eden Caswell, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry (part)2000
31 Joyce Krawiec Republican Kernersville Davie, Forsyth (part)2014↑
32 Paul A. Lowe Jr. Democratic Winston-Salem Forsyth (part)2015↑
33 Carl Ford Republican China Grove Rowan, Stanly 2018
34 Vickie Sawyer Republican Mooresville Iredell, Yadkin 2018↑
35 Todd Johnson Republican Monroe Union (part)2018
36 Paul Newton Republican Concord Cabarrus, Union (part)2016
37 Jeff Jackson Democratic Charlotte Mecklenburg (part)2014↑
38 Mujtaba Mohammed Democratic Charlotte Mecklenburg (part)2018
39 DeAndrea Salvador Democratic Charlotte Mecklenburg (part)2020
40 Joyce Waddell DemocraticCharlotteMecklenburg (part)2014
41 Natasha Marcus Democratic Davidson Mecklenburg (part)2018
42 H. Dean Proctor Republican Hickory Alexander, Catawba 2020↑
43 Kathy Harrington Republican Gastonia Gaston (part)2010
44 Ted Alexander Republican Shelby Cleveland, Gaston (part)2018
45 Deanna Ballard Republican Blowing Rock Alleghany, Ashe, Surry (part) Watauga, Wilkes 2016↑
46 Warren Daniel Republican Morganton Avery, Burke, Caldwell 2010
47 Ralph Hise Republican Spruce Pine Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Yancey 2010
48 Chuck Edwards Republican Flat Rock Buncombe (part), Henderson, Transylvania 2016↑
49 Julie Mayfield Democratic Asheville Buncombe (part)2020
50 Kevin Corbin Republican Franklin Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, Swain 2020

Past composition of the Senate

See also

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  2. North Carolina Senate Leadership

Coordinates: 35°46′59.53″N78°38′20.24″W / 35.7832028°N 78.6389556°W / 35.7832028; -78.6389556