The filing period for local elections closed Friday, February 28 at 12:00 PM. The key races I’ve been watching are the Wake County District Attorney race, the Wake County Clerk Race, and various local Superior Court and District Court races.

These races will probably have more direct impact on Wake County voters lives than various state or federal elections, even though they are less closely watched than the more prominent races.

The DA’s race has turned into a four-way contest in the Republican primary between two felony assistant district attorneys, Jefferson Griffin and Jeff Cruden, and two candidates from the private bar, John Bryant and long-shot candidate Allen Swaim.

On the Democratic side, the DA’s race is a two-way contest between current Wake County Clerk Lorrin Freeman, the establishment candidate, and Benjamin Zellinger, a felony assistant district attorney with a good deal of family money.

The Clerk’s race has turned into a three way contest in the Republican Primary between sitting District Court Judge and Jesse Helms granddaughter Jennifer Knox and lesser known Barbara Moore and Joe Teague.

On the Democratic side, Sam Bridges, a former mayor of Garner, and Blair Williams, a former assistant clerk, have filed to run.

Most of the District Court bench up for election breathed a sigh of relief. Only Louis Meyer, who was appointed by Bev Perdue to finish out Kristen Ruth’s term, is facing a challenger. Meyer, a Democrat, came from Poyner Spruill where he practiced in the employment law section.

James Ronald “Ronnie” Ansley, who has run for judge in the past and is a solo practitioner, is running again against Meyer.

James Fullwood’s open seat is being sought by two candidates. Former District and Special Superior Judge Craig Croom, who enjoys wide support in the courthouse, will be facing Charles Gilliam Phillips.