It's no surprise that a lot of Republicans are salivating over the new 8th Congressional District.
It's not the same district that has twice elected Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell. It still runs from Charlotte east. But now there's fewer Democrat-heavy, Mecklenburg County precincts and new, mostly Republican voters in Randolph, Davidson and Davie counties.
In 2008 Barack Obama carried the current district with more than 52 percent of the vote. Republican John McCain would have carried the newly configured 8th with almost 58 percent of the vote.
So far GOP state Reps. Jerry Dockham of Davidson County and Justin Burr of Stanly County as well as former Iredell County commissioner Scott Keadle have expressed an interest. Not on the list? Harold Johnson, aka "The Big Guy" from his years as a WSOC TV sportscaster.
In 2010 Johnson won a GOP primary but lost to Kissell. Now, he says, he's "probably not" going to run. And Johnson, a longtime Statesville resident who moved to Cabarrus County to run two years ago, has moved back to Statesville.
Kissell, by the way, already has announced that he'll run again.
4:25: correction made. Johnson ran in 2010, not 2008.