September 7, 2018/Press

Friday Takeaway – September 7


With Labor Day behind us, campaign season is officially in full swing. In a memo released this week, the NC Democratic Party outlined our path to success this November:
  • An Expanded Battleground: With fantastic Democratic candidates running in every single legislative district and the unprecedented support of Break the Majority, Republican leadership is being stretched thin. Democrats have looked beyond suburban Wake and Mecklenburg to target nearly 60 Senate and House races this cycle.
  • Unprecedented Fundraising: North Carolina Democrats have a $4.5 million cash-on-hand advantage over the NC GOP while strong Democratic candidates continue to outraise their vulnerable opponents.
  • Historic Investments in the Grassroots: NC Democrats and Break the Majority have launched one of the largest legislative field programs in the country with the goal of knocking on 1 million doors by Election Day.
  • Democrats Have a Winning Message: While Republicans are stuck on defense running a tired playbook labeling every Democrat as “extreme” with a “radical agenda,” Democrats are looking ahead with a winning message on the issues that matter most to North Carolinians like public education and affordable health care.
  • Republicans are Getting Desperate: GOP candidates are busy trying to distract from their missteps and shift blame on their poor records, while desperately trying anything that will help turn out their conservative base in the fall.


This week a three-judge panel ruled that North Carolina’s voters won’t see new congressional maps this fall. It’s the same old GOP playbook – attack our state’s democracy and then run out the clock on fixing your mistakes.
North Carolina voters will have suffered under unconstitutional maps for too long – they deserve the chance to finally pick their representatives, instead of the other way around.


North Carolinians are ready for new leadership in Washington. With an expanded map and unprecedented enthusiasm from the Democratic grassroots, this year’s congressional contests are heating up in districts that haven’t been competitive for years.In NC’s seventh district, 538 recently increased Democratic candidate Dr. Kyle Horton’s chances of success from 40 to 1 odds to a 3 in 10 chance, spelling trouble for Republican incumbent David Rouzer.

In NC’s second district, new polls show Linda Coleman neck-in-neck with Republican incumbent George Holding. A spooked Holding said, “The wind has changed. The ground beneath our feet has shifted.”
In NC’s ninth district, Republican Mark Harris is so desperate for an attack against Democrat Dan McCready that he actually tried to hit him for not having a long history of misogynistic sermons. Meanwhile, Dan is earning national attention for showing that Democrats are guided by their faith, and that Republicans don’t own that lane.


Vulnerable Republican Ted Budd has scrubbed his website clean of any mention of health care or the Affordable Care Act, despite his longtime vocal opposition to the law. The issues section of the site once highlighted his deep desire to repeal the ACA. Now, it fails to mention health care at all.
Probably because the popularity of the ACA continues to rise while the popularity of Republicans like Ted Budd who opposed protections for pre-existing conditions continues to plummet.
No matter how many times he hits delete, Budd can’t erase the fact that he voted to strip millions of Americans of their health insurance, threaten protections for pre-existing conditions, and make fighting addiction even harder.


In an unprecedented and dangerous attempt to intimidate North Carolina’s voters, the Trump Administration along with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement issued a subpoena for a massive trove of sensitive voter information from all of North Carolina’s 100 counties.
Voters deserve to feel safe and protected when they head to the polls, and this fishing expedition by the Trump Administration is yet another example of the GOP’s hostility toward minority voters.


Last week, Republicans took a second stab at rewriting their deceptive constitutional amendments. This week, a three-judge panel ruled that the updated amendments can appear on the ballot in November.Any cosmetic changes legislative Republicans made don’t change the fact that these amendments remain an attempt to steamroll our constitution and mislead voters into doing the GOP’s dirty work:

  • The ballot language for one amendment is so complicated you would need multiple PhDs to understand it.
  • The other creates a 4-4 Board of Ethics aimed at creating partisan gridlockand insulating legislators from their own shady dealings.
Voters should reject the amendments this fall – six NC Governors, six former chief justices, and editorial boards across the state agree:


Though the Trump administration likes to sing the praises of a growing economy, everyday Americans don’t have much to celebrate. Wage growth remains weak while Trump’s massive tax cuts for corporations haven’t filtered down to workers, all of which spells trouble for Republicans at the polls in 60 days.


On constitutional amendments:

News & Record:
These amendments were drafted in the dark, presented under a deadline, removed from full-throated debate, shoved on the ballot for you to consider. Why? Because their passage cedes to the legislature tools to execute more self-serving judgments without input from your representative. The only way to check this power play is for you to reject them all.”

Star News:
Cooper is right; this is still a bald, partisan power play that would weaken state government, leaving it more venal and more vulnerable to corruption. Regardless of which party holds the executive office, we need to preserve a legitimate balance of power in state government. That is why Republican former governors — including Pat McCrory, who’s not exactly a big fan of the current governor — spoke out. If these two amendments ever do make it to the ballot, voters should reject them outright.”

Charlotte Observer:
The two amendments at issue are both designed to take significant power away from the governor and give it to the legislature. Amassing power in one branch should concern voters whatever their political party, because checks and balances are essential to responsible government

On Confederate monuments…

By mandating a statewide solution, legislators fueled discord instead of preempting it… There’s a clear path to a solution, and that’s for the legislature to restore the authority over the monuments to the communities that erected them.

“While the actions by the General Assembly’s leadership that essentially commandeered every Confederate monument in a public space in the state may have been motivated by efforts to stir a political base, it has done little to effectively address real public concerns and help North Carolina step out of the muck of the past onto higher ground.”



Have a great weekend!

Robert Howard

Sarah Flowers