North Carolina's new members of Congress will take the oath of office Thursday in Washington, including Republican Robert Pittenger who was elected to fill retiring Representative Sue Myrick's seat in Charlotte and Republican Richard Hudson who beat Larry Kissell to represent the 8th District.
Despite their differences in the campaign, Hudson has already signaled his intent to follow in some of Kissell's footsteps. He will maintain the same district office in Concord and has hired Kissell's Deputy District Director – Georgia Lozier – to run constituent services. That's a relatively unusual move for a Congressman replacing someone of the opposite party, but Hudson says working with constituents is one of the few non-partisan parts of his job.
"I represent Republicans, Democrats and unaffiliated voters – that's the most sacred responsibility a Congressman has, is being available to your constituents, being accessible," says Hudson. "If they have problem with government agencies, if they need help with referrals to other folks for state or local issues that they're having, we need to be there. I'm not gonna check people's party registration at the door."
Hudson's Concord office will open to constituents Wednesday – the same day he's inaugurated in Washington.