John Blust – coal ash and the eccentric in a safe seat

This story was cross posted from http://restorenc.org/news/

A toxic slurry of selenium and arsenic can bubble discretely for decades only to spill out and imperil life along miles of rivers and lakes. So too can a conservative legislator lay low for more than a decade until the Tea Party waves of 2010 and 2012 allow him to express himself like a cold sore that arrives when the weather changes.

Read the rest here.

Racism & cronyism, Duplin style

Sometimes the illegal cronyism is so blatant that even Kim Strach has to call foul.

In an unusual move, the executive director of the State Board of Elections is refusing to confirm the appointment of a new director at the Duplin County Board of Elections, citing concerns over the way the candidate was chosen by the local board, which includes two Republicans and a Democrat.

The Duplin County board appointed a pickle factory worker with no elections oversight experience and argued to the SBOE that he was the most qualified individual. So Kim asked for the documentation demonstrating that he was the most qualified individual. The Duplin County board declined to provide that documentation.

How the GOP plans to steal control of the USA

Remember, you read it here first. Unless you read it somewhere else first. But you read this particular essay here first. :-)

At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theorist or doomsday prophet, we think it's really important to explore this issue. We apologize in advance that the exploration is such a long essay. But this isn't conspiracy theory; it's real and it is likely to be imminent.


It's become clear that the GOP is a declining party. Their base of rich old white straight Christian males is declining and will continue to decline. Minorities, young people and often women favor more progressive policies more in line with the Democratic party's platform.

The GOP has maintained and even increased its control largely through gerrymandering and voter suppression. That can last only so long, and they know it.


Understanding the roles various democratic political entities in elections

Many NC Democrats think that the NCDP runs all elections in North Carolina. Historically, the election responsibilities have been divided as follows:

1.) The NC House and Senate Caucuses recruit candidates for their districts, develop the election strategy, hire the political campaign consultants and raise funds to get them elected;

2.) The NC Democratic Party responsibility is to work principally for the election of the President and US Senators;

3.) Political campaign consults, like lawyers are in the business to make money and like some lawyers, they may take hopeless cases as long as the money is there;

4.) There may or may not be coordination of activities between these four entities.

I have been repeatedly told this is how election have been done by Democrats in NC by my members of the General Assembly. I don't doubt that they are correct.

What we should be doing

In my recent post I wrote of what I perceived to be a struggle with in the democratic party over the past administrations. I was accused of not putting forth any new ideas. In this post I will put forth an idea that could change the course of this election. This grassroot idea is elegant in its simplicity thus very doable.

It is a Letter Writing Campaign

1. This is where a members log in to a website (which I am being trained on it now) and pull a list of up to twenty (20) names and addresses. Or makes a request for twenty names and they are emailed to them so that we have a gate keeper and we do not have to make a website.There could be a coordinator for each county or groups of counties. We need to target letters for targeted races. Letter writers would return when they were ready for more names, each member would be encouraged to write at least t 40 letters

New voters continue to shun major parties

The number of voters registering in a major party continues to decline in North Carolina, even as the total number of registered voters in continues to rise. As of Nov. 2, there were 6,475,017 registered voters: 2,764,123 registered Democrats, 1,990,192 registered Republicans, 22,173 registered Libertarians, and 1,698,529 registered unaffiliated.

The decline in the percentage of voters registered as Republicans or Democrats reached a new record low of 42.69 percent. The number of unaffiliated voters is now at 26.23 percent and the Libertarian portion is at 0.34 percent.

Something fishy going on in Ronda

How does a former Wake County School Board member and failed candidate for state auditor land a seat on the town commission as a write-in candidate with no campaign, in the tiny mountain town she recently moved to? I don't know, but that's exactly what Debra Goldman managed to pull off in the little town of Ronda, located in eastern Wilkes County.

According to Shirley Johnson with the Wilkes County Board of Elections, unofficial tallies show 60 voters wrote in Reece's name, 59 wrote in Goldman's and 75 wrote in Foster's.

Foster is an incumbent who declined to file for re-election but changed his mind and ran as a write-in. He attempted to put Reece on the town board to fill a vacancy in 2012, but [Mayor] Varela derailed the effort.

North Carolina's Monster Voting Bill: A tale of voter suppression

by Amy Tiemann

A white Republican challenging black students' right to vote has a 97% success rate at removing these young minority voters from the rolls. Is that what we want for North Carolina?

It is starting to sink in that North Carolina's new voting laws go way beyond voter I. D.--which is problematic in itself--and lead straight into voter suppression. Now the U.S. Justice Department is suing the state for alleged racial discrimination in the laws. We thought era of poll taxes and bogus literacy tests was over in North Carolina, but now it looks like Justice Department intervention is necessary to keep our moderate Southern state from tumbling into new era of voter suppression.

The Hill: 'Weak state parties in the South risk hurting Democrats'

Under the Dome post by Rob Christensen:

The Hill

is reporting that "weak state parties in the South risk hurting Democrats’ chances of holding — or gaining — critical Senate seats in 2014.'

The article by the Cameron Joseph says that struggles in Louisiana, Georgia, and North Carolina "could force national Democrats, and the candidates themselves, to step in with big-dollar investments to build get-out-the-vote programs that are often left to the party’s state-level operations.''

“There’s a lot of drama in all of those places,” said one national Democratic strategist. “That means a lot more responsibility for coordinated campaigns in those states and really elevates the importance of field programs, things that are traditionally done by those state parties.”

Early voting opens Thursday across NC

Early voting opens Thursday across NC

One-stop early voting opens across North Carolina on Thursday for the counties and municipalities holding a primary or general election on Oct. 8.

Anyone who missed the voter registration deadline can register to vote and then cast an absentee ballot at their county board of elections office during the early voting period, which ends on Saturday, Oct. 5.

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