His race against Kathy Manning is now a toss-up:
This matchup may be the biggest culture clash in the country: Budd is a gun store owner and first-term Freedom Caucus member who homeschools his children in rural Davie County. Wealthy Democratic philanthropist Kathy Manning was the chief fundraiser for Greensboro's $78 million performing arts center scheduled to open next year. If ever there was a race that's "all about that base," this is it.
It's also behaving like open seat: Budd remains relatively unknown and undefined after winning this seat in 2016 with just 20 percent of the vote in the crowded GOP primary and some help from the Club for Growth. And even though the district voted for President Trump 53 percent to 44 percent, Greensboro may be energized and there aren't compelling statewide races to turn out rural GOP voters.
If there's any single "key" to this race (and a lot of others) it's turnout. While Kathy Manning may not be the ideal candidate for progressives, her campaign is vigorous and well-funded. And at the end of the day, when you're running against an empty-suit demagogue who will likely have a lot of money pouring in during the final stretch, having the ability to ramp up your advertising at the last minute is critical. Also, people who pose with their gun while trying to sport a "warm and welcoming" smile are at least three sandwiches shy of a picnic. True story.