9th District Republican Mark Harris hospitalized with infection

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Republican Mark Harris has been hospitalized with a severe bacterial infection, he announced on his campaign’s Facebook page on Friday.

Harris said he’s improving but will remain in the hospital for “the next few days.”

His illness kept him away from a Wake County courtroom this week when Harris’s attorneys tried to persuade a judge to order the certification of his election over Democrat Dan McCready in the 9th Congressional District. Harris leads by 905 votes in unofficial returns.

The judge refused the request, sending the matter to a new State Board of Elections that takes office on Thursday.

On Facebook, Harris said his illness “has been evolving for over a week.”

“Originally my primary care physician thought I had a simple case of bronchitis,” Harris wrote. “Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, and I got progressively worse. After numerous tests and days in the hospital, they now have determined, most likely through diverticulitis in the intestine, a relatively uncommon form of strep bacteria invaded my bloodstream. It colonized and started a second infection in my liver.

Harris said he and his family “have been overwhelmed by the prayers and support” from across the state. Harris is the former pastor of Charlotte’s First Baptist Church and a former president of North Carolina’s Baptist State Convention.

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