MAY 30, 2014


NC Veteran: Tillis should stand up to DC Backers to stop dishonest ads: Thom Tillis’ DC allies have no regard for the facts, and as a veteran, I am appalled by their willingness to ignore the truth to score political points. The people responsible for these robocalls and ads should stop them and try working with Kay to get this fixed rather than grandstanding, which helps no one. Read more here.

Hagan’s Debate Letter to Tillis: I know I am not alone in expressing my hope that this election will be one marked by a civil exchange of ideas. Spirited public debates are an important opportunity to promote that exchange and provide voters a chance to understand the stark contrast before them this year. The people of North Carolina deserve no less. Read more here.


Fracking bill passes Senate, heads to McCrory: A bill to allow fracking in North Carolina passed the House on Thursday by a 64-50 vote after another day of heated debate on the issue. Shortly after that the bill, Senate Bill 786, was passed by the Senate 33-12. The bill now goes to Gov. Pat McCrory, who consistently has supported allowing fracking in North Carolina. Read more here.

Senate leaders defend education cuts: Tillman acknowledged that the deep cut could require shuttering whole sections of the agency, but said many local districts can now perform the consulting and support services for which they used to rely on DPI. "These cuts will eliminate essential services for teachers and schools and leave teachers with more duties and less support," said June Atkinson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction . "North Carolina deserves better than this." Read more here.

Teaching assistants, state Department of Justice take big hits in Senate budget: The state will fund teaching assistants for kindergarten and first-grade classes only. The budget proposes to cut the state Department of Public Instruction by 30 percent, or $15 million. The budget taps a reserve for future benefit needs of state workers for all its $56.4 million, and cuts $22 million from the State Employee Health Plan contribution. Read more here.

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Lawmakers living life on fast track: The "fracking" bill went from a state House committee debut on Wednesday to Senate concurrence in less than 48 hours with little public notice… Hours after state lawmakers gave final approval Thursday to a package of adjustments to last year’s sweeping tax reform measure, McCrory signed the legislation into law…the state Senate is on pace to put a $21 billion spending measure in the hands of House budget writers before sunrise Saturday, less than 60 hours after making the initial draft of the plan available to the public on Wednesday night. Read more here.


Harry Reid’s attacks on Koch brothers send GOP donors into the shadows: Several prominent pro-Republican advocacy groups say they are benefiting from a burst of cash as some donors — fearful of harsh public attacks such as those aimed at the Kochs — turn away from political committees that are required by federal law to reveal their contributors. Read more here.

Shinseki apologizes for VA health-care scandal: Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki apologized publicly Friday for what he called an “indefensible” lack of integrity among some senior leaders of the VA health-care system, and he announced several remedial steps, including a process to remove top officials at the troubled VA medical center in Phoenix. Read more here.

House Approves Modest Funding Boost For Gun Background Checks: The House of Representatives on Thursday approved a measure that would boost funding for the nation’s background checks system, less than one week after another mass shooting shined the spotlight on congressional inaction on gun control. Read more here.


City tax rate could go up by more than a penny: Three of the city’s eight council members spoke Thursday in favor of a larger increase, which is designed to make up for the loss of revenue caused by a new state law on the taxation of some business computer software. Read more here.

Gay Marriage Will Destroy the GOP: Polling consistently shows that independents, younger voters and women—all of whom used to routinely vote Republican in presidential contests—are now more often than not reliable Democrat voters. They are also pro-gay rights and same-sex marriage, especially younger voters. Unless Republicans begin to win some of them back with policies of social tolerance, they will simply no longer be in contention in presidential elections. Slavish devotion to right-wing social policies is the road to oblivion on the national stage. Read more here.

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