In 2009, Stein started serving in the state Senate representing a part of Wake County. He resigned in early March 2016 to focus on his candidacy as attorney general.
Stein faced Newton, winning 50.2% of the vote in the general election. He became the state’s 50th attorney general, succeeding Cooper, who ran for governor that year.
Meanwhile, O’Neill is in his third term as a public prosecutor.
O’Neill was born in the Bronx, but grew up on Long Island, New York. He attended Duke University and received a law degree from the New York Law School before starting private practice.
He’s been in the Forsyth County District Attorney’s office for more than two decades. He became the county’s first assistant district attorney with a focus on domestic violence.
In 2009, his boss, former district attorney Tom Keith, left a vacancy when he retired before the end of his term. Democratic governor Bev Perdue appointed O’Neill to end Keith’s term.
Forsyth County residents have chosen O’Neill to remain in that position ever since.
But now O’Neill is appealing to a wider audience that already knows Stein.
Stein takes on several problems
Stein made his name by doing more than most in his first term as attorney general.