June 23, 2014
Can North Carolina’s Latinos Help Democrats Hold the Senate?: Latinos have punched well below their weight in turnout, barely making up 2 percent of the electorate in North Carolina during the 2012 presidential election despite accounting for nearly 9 percent of the state’s population. They display an even bigger drop-off rate for the midterms than the general population. But in a race that’s expected to be extremely close, Democrats see a slice of the electorate that, though small, could potentially give Sen. Kay Hagan just the push she needs to win a second term. Read more here.
North Carolina Republicans try — despite themselves — to win minority voters: In North Carolina, where African American voters make up almost a quarter of registered voters, it makes sense that the Republican Party would try to spread its message, particularly before a midterm race that could tip the balance of the U.S. Senate. Perhaps black voters could be open to a checklist of conservative values. However, those leading the effort might want to start with a chat with their own state party leaders asking them to stop trying to help. Read more here.
Poll: Van Duyn leads in Buncombe senate race: Sen. Terry Van Duyn leads Republican challenger Mark Crawford in the state Senate 49 race, according to a poll her campaign released on Thursday, though both candidates are largely unknown to most voters. Read more here.
Large sit-in planned for ‘Moral Monday’: "Moral Monday" organizers are planning a “Sit-In, Stand-In, Teach-In, Plan-In, Pray-In” for this week’s protest inside the Legislative Building. The event will mark 60 weeks of demonstrations led by the state NAACP to protest policies enacted by the Republican-led legislature, since they started on April 29, 2013. Read more here.
Duke scientists report air pollution controls linked to lower NC death rates: Stronger emission controls in North Carolina may have saved lives by reducing deaths from respiratory illness, according to an academic study published Monday. The release of the study comes as state lawmakers are considering legislation this week that eliminates some of the state’s air-quality stations, part of the framework for measuring pollution across the state. Read more here.
Obama encouraging family-friendly work policies: The United States is the only industrialized nation that doesn’t mandate paid leave for mothers of newborns, although Obama says he’d like to see that change. "Only three countries in the world report that they don’t offer paid maternity leave – three – and the United States is one of them," Obama said in his weekly address. "It’s time to change that. A few states have acted on their own to give workers paid family leave, but this should be available to everyone, because all Americans should be able to afford to care for a family member in need." Read more here.
Mayors Put Focus on How to Raise Wages for Lowest-Paid Workers in Cities: Here at the annual meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors, which convened over the weekend, the subject of income inequality seemed to be on almost everyone’s lips, and mayors wondered aloud how best to use their powers to help the lowest-paid workers. Read more here.
Hagan to visit Fayetteville VA on Monday: U.S. Senator Kay Hagan, D-NC, will visit the Fayetteville VA Medical Center on Monday to receive an update from senior hospital officials and staff on efforts to reduce excessive wait times for veterans. “It’s clear that the VA has a long road ahead to restore the faith and confidence of our veterans, and I look forward to receiving an update on how the Fayetteville VAMC can better serve our veterans and ensure they’re receiving the care they have earned,” Hagan said in a statement. Read more here.
Jennette’s Pier: Fishing for Answers: North Carolina was lauded in 2003 for helping save historic Jennette’s Pier from developers. Now with a provision in the state House budget, some lawmakers seem to want to sell the pier. Read more here.