Which GOP candidate will benefit most from NC changing its presidential primary date?

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In my latest at IJ Review, I discuss how North Carolina gearing up to change its presidential primary from May to March could potentially be good news for Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker more so than the rest of the crowded but diverse GOP field:

WI Gov. Scott Walker

Advantage: Walker?

In years past, if you were a Republican seeking the GOP presidential nomination, the state of North Carolina wasn’t too high on your list of states to target. The Tar Heel primary has traditionally been held in May, at which point there already was (usually) a presumptive nominee. And, at least until 2008, the state was regarded as safely red for the general election.

This year, however, the low priority of North Carolina for challengers for the Republican nomination looks to be changing, as state legislators are putting the finishing touches on a plan to push the state’s presidential primary to March 15th:

Read the rest here, and please make sure to like and share on Facebook, and retweet on Twitter. Thank you!

PS: It’s important to note that the change in North Carolina is for the presidential primary only – not for other races.

My latest at IJ Review

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Monument vandalized

NC Women of the Confederacy monument in downtown Raleigh. Image via WTVD/ Jim Schumacher

My two most recent posts at IJ Review deal with hot button topics that have captured both statewide and national attention in recent weeks.

One has to do with the emerging issue in the south of Confederate monuments/memorials being vandalized, and North Carolina has become no stranger to the issue. There were two back to back in Charlotte last week, and more have hit the area and across the state this week.

Related to all of this – and in light of the widespread calls by our “thought leaders” to remove all traces of remembrances of the Confederacy from public view after the Confederate battle flag was permanently removed from in front of the SC statehouse earlier this month, the North Carolina House passed a bill yesterday that would make it all but impossible for “objects of remembrance” (like Confederate monuments) in the state to be torn down/moved without the General Assembly passing a law allowing it. The Senate passed the bill back in April. Governor McCrory has not yet declared whether he will sign, veto, or allow it to become law without his signature. The General Assembly has a veto-proof majority.

And speaking of the Governor, in response to the horrific domestic terrorist shooting rampage last Thursday at Chattanooga, TN recruiting centers that left 4 Marines and 1 Naval officer dead, McCrory ordered stepped up security measures at all National Guard facilities across the state. It was not specified as to whether or not that included arming recruiters and other military personnel at these installations.

Thanks for reading! :)

Were 2 NC churches vandalized over the weekend the work of LGBT activists?

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My latest at Independent Journal Review details two recent incidents of church vandalism in Guilford County, North Carolina that saw windows busted out, landscaping being overturned, and walls and parking lots being spray painted with rainbows and messages like “Gay is OK!” and “Straights Approve!”

Law enforcement officials are still investigating. Stay tuned…

NC church vandalism

Image via Fox 8.

What does the #BoycottIndiana RFRA “outrage” mean for North Carolina?

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NC Governor Pat McCrory

NC Governor Pat McCrory.

With the ridiculous Code Red outrage that has translated into self-serving “boycotts” of the state of Indiana after last week’s passage of their own version of the President Clinton-approved 1993 federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and with Arkansas expected to be the 21st state after Indiana to sign into law an RFRA passed by their state legislature, I thought it would be a good idea to speculate on what it all means for North Carolina.

In my latest at IJReview, I noted NC’s GOP Governor Pat McCrory has signaled he doesn’t think such laws are necessary for this state. In fact, he indicated Monday he would veto in its current form a bill currently under consideration in the GOP-led state legislature that would give magistrates the option to opt out of performing a gay wedding ceremony if they feel it violates their religious faith.

“What is the problem they’re trying to solve?” McCrory asked during Monday’s broadcast of WFAE’s Charlotte Talks program.

North Carolina’s proposed version of the RFRA was introduced last week in both the state House and Senate. House Speaker Tim Moore said Tuesday that the bill deserved careful consideration in terms of how passage could impact NC’s “brand”:

As opposition to a new Religious Freedom Restoration Act appeared to grow, N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore Tuesday signaled that lawmakers will take a hard look at its potential fallout.

Moore called an unusual, impromptu news conference in his office to say the House will be deliberate as it considers the bill.

He said while the bill is important to a number of House Republicans, the session’s primary goals are job creation and improving roads and education. He said he wants to find out how the religious freedom legislation accomplishes those objectives and what it does to improve North Carolina’s “brand.”

“I think we need to show that if we approve this bill, that it will improve North Carolina’s brand,” he said. “Anything we do, we have to make sure we don’t harm our brand.”

[…]

Moore alluded to the current backlash in Indiana after GOP Gov. Mike Pence signed a similar bill into law.

Major industries, including Eli Lilly and Co., have urged Indiana officials to change the law so it can’t be used to justify discrimination. The head of the NCAA, scheduled to hold its Final Four this weekend in Indianapolis, said the law “strikes at the core values of what higher education in America is all about.”

Moore noted that Indiana is feeling repercussions from passage of its religious freedom law. He’s met with business leaders, and North Carolina’s bill has come up.

Another Republican in the House, Rep. Charles Jeter (R-Huntersville) gave off the distinct impression that he wouldn’t support such legislation:

GOP Rep. Charles Jeter of Huntersville said the N.C. proposal differs from the federal law in another respect.

“The difference is how it’s intended to be applied,” Jeter said. “And while some people may not like it, society grows over time. I think this (proposal) is specific to the homosexual issues, the same-sex issues, the gender issues.”

Jeter said existing laws already protect religious freedom.

Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger (R) doesn’t sound too enthused about the issue, either:

So, would the North Carolina’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act measures, which have been filed in both the House and the Senate, contribute to that economic boom?

“I think what we’ve done over the past four years would be the thing that has put us in a position where our economy is performing most other states,” said Berger, R-Rockingham. “I think what we are going to be focused on, as we have been over the past four years, is doing things that will move us in that direction. That means we’re going to deal with economic development, continuing tax reform, our regulatory climate, all of those kinds of things.”

So, it doesn’t sound like the RFRA is part of that group, does it?

“It’s been filed. A decision will be made as to whether or not we move it forward,” Berger said.

Everything at this point that happens with this type of legislation here in North Carolina needs to be viewed through the post-passage-of-the-Indiana-law prism. As I wrote on Twitter last night:





Simply put, GOP leaders in North Carolina are are already giving off vibes that they no longer want to deal with the hassle of trying to defend themselves and their state in front of a national audience as they’ve had to do over the last couple of years, thanks to the left’s relentless targeting and bullying of their reform agenda, this time over a law that some of them clearly fear could have a negative impact on our still-recovering local economy if the boycotts threats begin.

Color me a bit disappointed so far by what I’m hearing. BUT, as they say, stay tuned….

NC NAACP oversight fail of local chapter’s election causes national org to step in

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NC NAACP President / Rev. William Barber

NC NAACP President / Rev. William Barber, NC’s version of Al Sharpton.

My latest at IJ Review discusses how the national NAACP has stepped in to investigate the Winston-Salem, NC branch after allegations and complaints surfaced of vote tampering, paper ballots (supposedly against the rules), and campaign literature being illegally distributed at a January election of executive board members.  

Because there had been so much dissension last fall among the Winston group over the nominating process, the state NAACP – of which Moral Monday “leader” and vocal voter ID opponent Rev. William “Bill” Barber heads – was called in to “oversee” that January election … and failed.  As a result, the situation has escalated to the national office.

In short, a city-based NC NAACP election for president was voided by the national NAACP after complaints alleging improper vote tampering and illegal campaigning at the January 10 election – which was overseen by the state NAACP, which happens to be a vocal opponent of the type of voting laws that aim to prevent future instances of vote fraud in government elections.

Can’t make it up …

 

Headline of the day: “Suspect in Obama mask robs Concord, NC Taco Bell”

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Obama mask

I know the feeling …
(Image via Twitter)

Via the Independent Tribune:

CONCORD, N.C. — Authorities have arrested two men and are looking for a third in an alleged robbery conspiracy at a Concord Taco Bell.

At about 6:29 a.m. Sunday, Concord police responded to an armed robbery call at the Taco Bell at 2281 Spider Drive.

Two suspects stole $1,300 cash from the restaurant, according to a police report and information provided by CPD. One suspect was wearing a navy blue sweat suit, an Obama mask and had a handgun. The second suspect was wearing camouflage clothing, a black ski mask and carried a rifle.

During the investigation, police determined that Darrius De’quane Mack-Weaks, a Taco Bell employee, allegedly conspired with his cousin and a friend to rob the restaurant, according to CPD.

A Twitter follower quipped:


Heh.

President Obama – if he’s not robbing us one way, he’s robbing us some other way …

Moderate #NCDems try to take the state party back

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Moral Monday

At left, a Moral Monday protester. At right, Moral Monday ”spiritual leader” William Barber. Um, huh? (Photo via Don Carrington/Carolina Journal)

My latest at IJ Review is about how a new group of so-called “centrist” elected Democrats in the North Carolina state house have formed in an effort to show North Carolinians that not only are there still some pro-business Dems left in NC, but also that not the entire party has gone off the deep end. Their hope is to try and turn the party around to where they are winning elections again and are no longer alienating moderates and conservatives that used to be well within their ranks but who are becoming increasingly dissatisfied at some of the positions state and national Democrats have taken. Judging by how the “progressive” Moral Monday movement has taken hold (see photo above), I’d say their concerns about the direction of their party are well-founded.

I’ve talked about this for the last couple of years in how the “modern” version of the state Democrat party here has quickly turned into a state version of the national party, which hasn’t sat well with some long-time state Dems who see “their side” as veering too far off to the left. Will be interesting to see how this works out – and IF it will work, as “centrists” who have formed coalitions within various state and national arms of the Democrat party across the country in recent years haven’t had too much success.

Grab the popcorn ….

NC woman makes fool of herself in road rage video gone viral

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Road rage in NC

CAUGHT ON TAPE: North Carolinian Kristin Phillips, who made a fool of herself for the world to see.

Just say no to road rage, OK? It’s just not worth it.

Via MyFox8 in NC: Randleman road rage woman charged

Watch the video, filmed by the harassed woman on a cell phone that was mounted to the dash of her car. She had a child with her. The idiot woman in the other vehicle who got caught on camera has made national headlines. It’s embarrassing, stupid, pointless, solves nothing, and can get people hurt – or killed.

And for what?

Look, I’ve been at my wits end on the road here before behind someone acting like they’re taking a leisurely Saturday afternoon tour, or beside someone who revs their engine at the red light like “it’s on.”  Or someone riding my bumper like I’m sitting still. It’s annoying. Infuriating. Frustrating. All of the above.

But just take a deep breath and be the better person. Let it go and get home safely. If YOU don’t feel safe, call 911 and try to maintain a safe distance.

OK? That is all.

NC residents may find themselves in a “Land of Confusion” come tax-filing time

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Taxes

It’s tax-filing time – are you ready?

Yours truly is now officially a contributor to the Independent Journal Review, and my first piece is on the NC tax reform laws that went into effect last year and how, as a result, some residents of this state might be perplexed on how to fill out their state tax returns come tax-filing time.

Very excited for the opportunity to write for the IJ Review! The NY Times did a surprisingly nice profile on them last November – make sure you read it to understand why the site has become a big deal for conservatives, and make sure to bookmark the site and visit back often. :)

Two weeks later, still basking in the #NCSEN afterglow

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Tillis wins - News and Record

Headline from the Greensboro (NC) News and Record, 11-5-14

Yeah, so this happened – and it wasn’t even supposed to.

I didn’t have much time to spend at the blog writing about my experiences the last few months of the US Senate campaign battle between (outgoing) Senator Kay Hagan (D) and (now-Senator-Elect) NC House Speaker Thom Tillis (R).  But suffice it to say – if you weren’t paying attention to social media prior to the election – that new media had a LOT to do with driving the narrative and focus of the local and national press in the final couple of months of the campaign, and I was proud to be a part of it alongside some fantastic, never-say-quit people here in NC and elsewhere.

One of these days when I get an extended amount of free time to organize everything (links, etc), I’ll try to write about it here just for the record.  It was truly one of the most stressful things I’ve ever been a part of and – in the end – extraordinarily rewarding.  As the headline above notes. ;)