Watt takes over federal housing agency

  • Posted: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 1:46 a.m.

WASHINGTON (AP) — North Carolina Rep. Mel Watt was sworn in Monday to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

That leaves Watt’s 12th Congressional District seat open and a number of candidates have declared their intent to run for it in a special election, including one from Rowan County.

Constance Johnson, who ran for the Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education, has a website and social media presence announcing her candidacy. Johnson did not return a telephone call from the Post on Monday.

Vice President Joe Biden presided over a ceremonial swearing-in for Watt on Monday on the White House grounds. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx officially swore in Watt earlier in the day.

Watt was confirmed by the Senate in December after being in limbo since President Barack Obama nominated him in May. Republicans said hes not qualified, while Democrats said the 21-year House veteran has the needed experience.

Filibuster changes that Senate Democrats made late last year lowered the voting threshold for Watt and others to be confirmed.

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