Source: National Journal

Before the coronavirus pandemic, Dan Forest faced an uphill battle. The only incumbent governor to lose reelection in modern North Carolina was Pat McCrory, and the current incumbent Roy Cooper is the one who beat him. Couple those odds with lethargic fundraising and meager name recognition, and Forest’s bid for governor was always going to be a tough one.

Now, Republicans admit, “Forest’s already-uphill battle has only gotten steeper.”

Cooper has continued to outpace Forest in fundraising and polling consistently shows a lopsided Cooper lead, often double digits. 

Beyond that, Forest’s campaign has struggled to effectively communicate its message and, when Team Forest does break through, it’s often not the attention any campaign would want.

Forest is fumbling, while Cooper’s response to the coronavirus has earned overwhelming support. Recent polling showed nearly 3 in 4 North Carolinians approve of his handling of the coronavirus response.

Ultimately, the election will likely be a referendum on leadership during the coronavirus. It’s hard to see how Forest can overcome an incumbent that enjoys 74% approval in that regard.

Read the full article from the National Journal here.