Top Democratic North Carolina judge is stepping down

August 25, 2023

One of the only two Democrat judges on the North Carolina Supreme Court is resigning, according to the Associate Press

The judge is 67-year-old Michael Morgan.

The resignation announcement

Morgan made his resignation announcement on social media on Thursday morning.

As the announcement states, Morgan's resignation will not become official until early next month. But, it appears that this will probably not be the last that we will see of Morgan.

What's next for Morgan?

Morgan told the local news outlet WRAL-TV that he still has "a desire to make a difference in the state of North Carolina." He added, "After I get off the court, I can focus on how that might best be accomplished."

Morgan, though, refused to get into specifics about what exactly this might mean.

There has been speculation that Morgan might be eyeing the governor's seat. But, at the time of this writing, this remains to be merely a rumor.

Morgan has been a judge for the past 34 years, holding different positions at different times. He obtained his position on the North Carolina Supreme Court in 2017.

Who will replace Morgan?

As far as the North Carolina Supreme Court is concerned, it appears likely that Morgan will be replaced by another Democrat, maintaining the status quo, which is a 5 to 2 majority for the Republicans.

WRAL reports, "An early retirement gives Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper a chance to appoint Morgan's replacement, and that replacement can run as an incumbent — a potential advantage in a key race on the 2024 ballot."

This appears to be, at least, part of the reason why Morgan has decided to retire now. Cooper will specifically be looking to replace Morgan before Sept. 12, 2023, when the state supreme court is scheduled to hear arguments.

Cooper, at the time of this writing, has yet to give any indication about whom it is that he will choose to replace Morgan. Cooper, though, has put out a statement thanking Morgan for his service.

Cooper said, "Just found out [about Morgan's retirement] today. I look forward to meeting and talking with Justice Morgan and thanking him for his service."

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