Early voting starts strong – Source: The Rocky Mount Telegram

Early voting turnout has been strong so far in both Nash and Edgecombe counties, election officials said last week.

Twin Counties voters cast more than 400 ballots during the first two days of early voting last week, relatively high marks for a midterm primary election, officials said. (Read more @ The Rocky Mount Telegram)

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Elections 2010


I’m with Obama: A Thank You would be NICE! by George Fisher

In Miami on Thursday when he took a jab at the Tea Parties that had been rallying that day against taxes, big government and government overspending. “I’ve been a little amused over the last couple of days where people have been having these rallies about taxes” President Obama stated to a laughing and cheering audience, “You would think they’d be saying thank you.” The President also commented on his economic recovery package, stating that it has led to two million Americans being put back to work as well as the so called tax cuts that he implemented early last year.


Obama walked into a host of problems including the deepest recession in America since the Great Depression…so bad, that it was beginning to look like the Dark Ages.  A spreading global economic crisis that literally hit every major international power (incase you don’t remember, ICELAND went bankrupt!).  China was threatening to dump the US Dollar like it was a lead balloon.  (buying up T-Bills at the same time)

Let’s see…what else? Oh, an automotive industry on the brink of collapse. A soaring national debt thanks to 2 (count ‘em 2) wars left by George Bush.  Unemployment increasing up the whazoo.  And, least we forget, the threat of global terrorism to US interest at it’s highest since 9/11.  Did I miss anything?

Since Obama took office he has done the following:
Assured that Veterans Administration budget is prepared as a “must-pass” legislation
Increased the VA budget including more mental health professionals (bet ya didn’t hear about that on Fox News).

Increased funding to expand community based prevention programs;
Signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities;
Increased funding to expand community based prevention programs;
Eliminated the higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans;
Expanded eligibility for Medicaid;
Gave tax credits to those who need help to pay health premiums;
Closed the "doughnut hole" in Medicare prescription drug plan;
Expanded loan programs for small businesses;
Established a credit card bill of rights;
Created an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to invest in peer-reviewed manufacturing processes.

Getting tired, I can name over 70 more.  But, incase you’re a Ditto Head, I won’t bore you anymore with facts.  I’ll only say this…Hell, yes, a F*&King thank you would have been nice.

See original post @ Behind The Scenes Of A TV Talk Show

See related:

Tea Party

SPINCycle for April 15, 2010


Ken Lewis for US Senate: Wanted more solid responses. I be damn all I have to say. It does not matter how smart a black man is, certain folks will always say the black man needs to do more. This confirms the saying the black man has to be 2 or 3 times better than the white man. But we always talking about being equal. And then we don’t understand why little black boys do what they do.

Senator Don Davis: I can’t believe Senator Don Davis would do that. What was he thinking about? The thing to have done would be to take the ticket and deal with it at a later time. C. Dancy II – DCN Publisher

If you are having trouble reading this email, you may view the online version

Welcome to this week`s edition of SPINCycle.

Welcome to this week’s edition of SPINCycle. Be sure to tune into this week’s show when we will air the conclusion of our 600th show celebration interview with UNC President Emeritus Bill Friday.  Tom Campbell conducted the interview.

Tom Campbell`s Spin
The current rash of parties does have one point worth making.  Check out this week’s column,
A Tea Party we should all attend.

Heard on the Street

Democrats debate

We watched the debate last night between six Democrats wanting to be nominated to run against Richard Burr. Simply put, it wasn`t a great exercise in Democracy and, at the end of the evening we didn`t see a clear victor, even though Cal Cunningham`s campaign put out an e-mail claiming victory before the klieg lights in the NBC17 studios had dimmed.

One of the dangers in allowing viewers to pose questions in these debates is that they are not always well stated and such was the case last night. If questions aren`t good, it is hard to expect answers to be good. The format was a bit unusual, designed, we are sure, to spark some fireworks among participants. It didn`t and seemed lame as a result. But that might also have been the result of the lackluster performances of the candidates. The candidates had to know that the economy, health care, offshore drilling, the war in Afghanistan and job creation were going to be questions and should have rehearsed better answers in response. You could tell most had not been under the fire of debate before because they would start talking without thinking and get hopelessly lost in their responses. This will appear bush league in the big dance this fall. There were no knockouts or even knock-downs in this head-to-head battle, nor were there many major mistakes made.

Elaine Marshall didn`t do anything to hurt her status as frontrunner. There were several responses where she appeared knowledgeable, articulate and didn`t get caught in lengthy answers. I would like to have Cunningham`s answers submitted in writing. He has this extremely irritating habit with gestures and his voice is overly polished. I must admit both distracted me from hearing some of what he said. He did stub his toe regarding offshore drilling, saying that swimmers in the Gulf of Mexico come out covered with oil. But otherwise he certainly ranked in the top two or three. Ken Lewis has a very pleasing style of talking but we wanted more solid content from his responses. It is obvious that he sees his biggest obstacle to a runoff as Cunningham because Lewis challenged him directly twice. We didn`t know Marcus Williams well prior to the debate, but he was impressive and we found ourselves liking him, even as he tried too hard to impress us with his vocabulary. He was likeable, genuine and while he won`t likely make a runoff this time he might be someone worth watching for future races. Ann Worthy seems like a very fine woman but she was clearly out of her league here.

So we head to the final two weeks of this campaign. Burr is on TV with some pretty good ads. Cunningham has some TV up but even as his message seems a bit off target this gives him some momentum going into May 4th. Marshall is counting on making the runoff but is going to need some good ads and Cunningham is likely to see some national money coming in to help him. One signal of how things will shake out in the primary comes from Down East. We hear several of the minority caucuses have endorsed Marshall, a blow to Lewis.

Nobody cares. This race has yet to generate any significant interest among voters and you can count on turnout being dismal. The judges races won`t help and in only a few instances are their sheriff`s contests of legislative elections sparking interest. Early voting begins today. In 2008 we saw large numbers turn out, a precursor of the extremely high vote count in the election. We will be watching to see whether this early vote yields many participants. Predictions are that few will show up.

Poole on trial May 4th
Former Easley aide Ruffin Poole goes on trial May 4th. US District Judge Terrence Boyle refused to allow further delay. Speculation is that this proceeding will last two to three weeks. Insiders tell us Poole still hasn`t given the feds anything that would cause them to ask for reduced sentences and that he might get 15 years or more in prison. US Attorneys will wait until after the Poole trial before seeking indictments against former Governor Easley, most likely by mid-June. Sometime during this period we will also see indictments against former US Senator John Edwards.

The reason why this timetable has relevance is that we understand US Attorney George Holding will step down from his post as soon as the Easley and Edwards indictments are issued. This will be a natural breaking point for Holding to allow his replacement to get started. The problem with this scenario is that the Senate has yet to hold hearings on Holding`s replacement. The Health Care debate tied up the Senate and hearings are not even scheduled at this time.

Is Don Davis serious?
Senator Don Davis from Snow Hill was stopped for speeding 84 miles per hour in a 70 mph zone. Incensed that he, a State Senator, was stopped, he became irked because he claims he thought legislators were exempt from speed limits. Surely he misspoke himself. Just ask former Alamance legislator Carey Allred. Unwilling to take his medicine like a man, take his ticket and go on, Davis then asked to speak to the law enforcement officer`s supervisor…like he was going to understand how important Davis really is and waive the ticket.

Sometimes you have to wonder about the people making decisions on our behalf.

Tea Party movement spreading
The conservative based Tea Party movement is spreading across the nation. We personally don`t like the tone or the pointed partisan flavor of the tea being served, but the movement does make one point worth considering: the erosion of state and individual rights over the past half century. Read more about this in My Spin,
“A Tea Party we should all attend.”

Cansler`s survival being questioned
When you are in the crosshairs of both Republicans and Democrats it is hard to survive. Secretary Lanier Cansler of the Department of Health and Human Services, the largest agency of state government, is under fire from Republicans for no-bid contracts to vendors that formerly did business with Cansler`s old consulting firm. Cansler is receiving a payout from his former firm of some 3,000 dollars per month. No amount of denials from Cansler about not participating in the no-bid contracts will prevent reasonable people from questioning the wisdom of the transactions. When he sold his interests in his former firm it is also standard for payouts to be made over a period of months. But couple all these things together and it doesn`t quite pass the smell test Governor Perdue is fond of mentioning.

On the other side of the aisle, Democrats are upset with the Secretary for his management of the agency and for not correcting the shoddy treatment of mentally ill and other patients. They are upset that Easley and Perdue have retained a Republican, a former legislator and former lobbyist to head DHHS. They don`t like the cuts he has made to mental health and we hear a growing number of legislators are whispering to Perdue that it might be wise to make a fresh start with a new Secretary. They are not quite so worried about the rants of former House Co-Speaker Richard Morgan and Carter Wrenn, but the chorus is warming up.

Rand back in the news
Former Senator Tony Rand made headlines again this week after the News and Observer revealed that the founder and chief executive of Monitech revealed that Rand tried to use his influence to convince him to sell the company to Rand, head of LEA. Monitech won a no-bid contract from the Department of Motor Vehicles (another questionable move) to provide devices that would prohibit people convicted of DWI from starting their vehicles if they had been drinking.
Read the story for yourself.

Public employees on the line
UNC President Erskine Bowles says that as many as 1,000 employees of the university system might lose their jobs if an anticipated additional 5 percent budget cut is enacted. Public employees across the state are increasingly concerned. So far they have escaped the major blunt of the recession. Now it appears they might see jobs disappear.

Walking the talk
Bev Perdue came to office at perhaps the worst moment in North Carolina history, except for the Great Depression. The economy would have been bad enough but the state was also in the throes of major scandals involving high ranking state officials. It is these scandals that might be her undoing. Perdue came late to the party in zero tolerance for unethical actions among public officials. She made bold statements on the night of her election but failed to follow through with action in most of her first year in office. Recent speeches about ethics policies are being met by some skepticism by critics asking why her actions don`t match her rhetoric. A sample of the hits she is taking appeared in a recent Creative Loafing article by Charlotte columnist Tara Servatius titled
“Is Gov. Perdue `Sleazley`?

No doubt the Governor is asking what it will take to put this behind her. The obvious answer is that people are waiting to see more action than rhetoric.

Is Bill Gates responsible?
Former state employees who use the Apple Mac are confused and confounded about the ORBIT computer system for the NC Retirement System. Those using macs who try to register are told that ORBIT only recognizes Microsoft. How can they get on the system? The answer being given some is to go to a public library and use the computers there….highly problematic for folks who worry about privacy issues and what kind of footprints might be left in using public computers. Talk about discrimination?

Derby Day
On to more pleasant things. Readers of this newsletter know the special place we have in our hearts for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Our grandson, Hart, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when 9 years old.

Our good friend Rufus Edmisten has also adopted this worthy cause and is using his third annual Derby Day event as a fundraiser to benefit JDRF. We are excited about the great food, liquid pleasure and great company that will gather Saturday, May 1 from 3 to 7 p.m. at MacNair`s Country Acres in Raleigh to enjoy the fun and cheer on their favorites in the annual running of the Kentucky Derby. There will be great barbecue and the fixin`s, a silent auction and a large Derby hat contest, along with a big screen TV for the viewing of the race. Everyone is encouraged to wear Derby attire.

Talk about doing good while doing well! Come make this a swell event by registering now. Registration is $40 per person or $70 per couple. If you can`t attend you can still contribute. For more info or to register call 919-829-1988.

600th Show
This week NC SPIN will celebrate our 600th edition with part two of our wonderful interview with former UNC President Emeritus Bill Friday. Be sure to watch this week as Bill tells about the trials of his first few years that included a major sports scandal, legislative battle, racial troubles and a fight with Governor Bob Scott. The stories and memories are a real treasure and more than a few have already asked for copies of this entire interview. DVD copies are available for $20, which includes shipping and handling and also a $5 contribution to the Ida Friday Faculty Development Fund at Meredith College.

You will want to have your own copy of this DVD for a keepsake and to remember this special time in North Carolina history. Be sure to order today by calling 919-832-1416 or e-mail:  contactus@ncspin.com.  Checks can be mailed to:  NC SPIN 851 Washington Street Raleigh, NC  27605.

Become a fan on NC SPIN’s Facebook page, check out some pictures from our Evening with Bill Friday and join the discussion.

Until next week, watch out for the SPIN!

Claire Cox-Woodlief, Editor
Tom Campbell, Publisher

I’m supporting Ken Lewis because I believe he is the best candidate to carry this fight forward in the U.S. Senate – Former Congresswoman Eva Clayton

Dear Curmilus,

This is former Congresswoman Eva Clayton. With the May 4 election approaching people have been wondering where I stand. I’m writing today to tell you that I’m standing with Ken Lewis.

As the first woman elected to Congress from the State of North Carolina, I have spent my career fighting for working women and families, and doing my own small part to ameliorate the injustices and inequities we see in the Unites States and around the world. I’m supporting Ken Lewis because I believe he is the best candidate to carry this fight forward in the U.S. Senate.

There isn’t anyone like Ken Lewis in the U.S. Senate. He represents the hopes of his grandmother, a sharecropper born on a North Carolina plantation who believed fiercely in the American Dream, even when it was denied to her.  And he carries with him the conviction of his own mother, a school teacher, that through hard work and commitment to our communities we can make this promise real.

I’m supporting Ken Lewis because he’ll be a committed advocate for people too long shut out of our political process: Women receiving less pay for the same work, families unable to afford basic health care, mothers forced to chose between putting food on the table and paying their electric bills.

In the U.S. Senate Ken Lewis will be a strong advocate for regular people, hard-hit in this down economy. But he needs our support now to help get him there.

Ken Lewis has spent his career providing legal services to community-based organizations and small businesses, helping to create jobs and expand opportunity.  He’s been a leader pushing for affordable housing, fighting predatory lending, and promoting early childhood education.

That’s the kind of experience we need right now in the Senate–experience grounded in the communities that our senators are meant to serve.

Please join me and support Ken Lewis for U.S. Senate. Together we can help build a brighter future for North Carolina and this country.


Eva Clayton

P.S. — One stop early voting has already begun across North Carolina. Find out where to vote by clicking here.

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Ken Lewis for US Senate
Email Us | Tel: (919) 683-818 | Fax: (919) 683-5599 | Mailing Address P.O. Box 17976 • Durham, NC 27715
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See related:

Kenneth Lewis

Repost: Response to meeting with all black males during school hours

March 17, 2003

South Edgecombe Middle School

Mr. Donald C. Rhodes

Rt. 2, Box 255

Pinetops, N.C. 27864

VIA EMAIL: drhodes@ecs.gsiwave.com

Dear Mr. Rhodes:

My main concern is not whether Rev. Richard Joyner attended this meeting or not. For the record he is not one of my favorite persons. But I am not on a lot of people favorite list either.

You say this program is a part Closing the Gap of our School Improvement Plan. I understand the Gap quite well but I don’t understand how you went about singling out these black males during school hours. I am truly insulted by this as a black male. I am glad that I don’t have a son at this school. It is tough enough trying to explain to my daughter what happened on last week.

You say this is not a part of Adopt a Student under the Summary of Changes since last year, Guest speakers to address black males and all students. I believe that the correct and legal thing to do is to not single out our children during school hours no matter the race, creed, background or etc. When I attended the School Improvement Team meeting on Wednesday, the day before the all black male meeting, you mentioned there would be the school’s first Adopt a Student meeting on the following morning. You said that Rev. Richard Joyner was coming as a community person but not as a minister. I am still trying to figure out how he could possibly come serving in one capacity and not the other. The message I got from that was you were trying not to offend children or others who may come from a different religious background other than that of Rev. Joyner. A thought comes to my mind, did you not care about offending the black males whom some have behavior problems, grades are low and etc. Well how about the black males that didn’t fall in one of these categories or are you saying they all fall in that category because they are black.

You say the information that was presented in the all black males meeting is part of our School Improvement Plan that was approved by South’s staff and the Board of Education. If I remember correctly I am on the School Improvement Team as a parent representative and I was able to vote on the plan. I came out to the school on 2 different occasions to sign off on the plan and you couldn’t send it to the board without my signature. You say the information is located on page six under the table “What is the Gap.” I understand this. I understand this type of information has been documented throughout our state on the television, newspaper, board of education meeting etc. I am very familiar with all of this and more familiar than most because I graduated from an Education Studies Program through the NC Justice Center in Raleigh just last year. I will be attending again this year. I understand the Gap better than most folks and I also understand why we have the Gap better than most folks.

You say you stated the purpose of the meeting to the black male students. You say you presented the facts from page six to the students. Well don’t you think the parents should have been invited? You say you talked with the students about reading and behavior. On page six I see Reading and Math and nothing about behavior. Looks to me that you deviated from the plan. You talked about your personal testimony that you grew up poor, and that you did not get all the things you wanted and that you borrowed $100 from your mother the day you started to work. If your mother was able to lend you $100 back then, I question were you really poor? Another thing is that having $100 back then was like having $1000 because $100 would go so much further. You say that was the last money that you borrowed except to buy a house and cars. This could be misleading because you should have stated what source you borrowed the money from, the black males could have thought that you borrowed the money from your mother instead of a financial institution. But you couldn’t think of a better example, it is quite early to be talking to 5th through 8th graders about buying a home and a car. Did you tell the black males anything about your daddy?

You say you also told them that they as minority males they had an opportunity to get scholarships to go to college if they performed academically. Yes, that is partly true but all students who do well academically it does not automatically guarantee them a scholarship. It would have been good if you had said that because you performed well academically that you received a scholarship.

You say you challenged them not to let peer pressure get to them and do not listen to others telling them it is not cool to be smart. I feel that singling out black males by calling them to the auditorium instead of the entire student body is another form of peer pressure and definitely not cool.

I believe you say you are committed to Closing the Gap and to eliminate the gap because that would mean all our students would be at grade level. You say all students not at grade level are eligible to attend to attend tutoring and our reading exploratory class. It seems to me that a meeting of targeted students not at grade level should take place with them and their parents. So is it left solely up to the black males now to take what you had to say and now move forward without knowing that they had someone they could identify within their community?

You say you are pleased that some black males stated to you in the hallway that they were going to try harder and a comment from a mother and father on Friday morning stating they did not see anything wrong with the meeting and that the father was working with some of our black males in his neighborhood. I would like to know this mother and father is. If you had sent a letter home to the parents that you were going to meet with all the black males, then just maybe this father and some others would have been there to speak to them.

You closed out by saying that before you have another meeting with black boys, please refer to them as black males as stated on page six, you will write a letter to the parents explaining the nature of the meetings. I am glad that you didn’t let that mother and father make you think that you were politically correct just because they didn’t have a problem with the meeting. Everyone that I have talked to have a problem with this meeting because of the way it was done.

You said you appreciate my comments and concerns. You say I have had some good suggestions this year that you have used and I can see my opinion and input is heard. Well I appreciate that but it is not about me. Again, I want to make it clear that I am speaking for many in the community because I talk to, listen to people and I gather information. I can not and will not let you or anyone think that I am that bright to come up with all the ideas and suggestions that I so boldly stand up and say publicly. There are so many who are afraid to speak out publicly and therefore the Good Master sends me to the scene to represent my people.

I understand that you had a Mr. Randolph, a substitute teacher and a Mr. Parker a teacher at S.E.M.S. to speak to the black males also. I would like to know what they had to say to them.

In my closing, I am requesting that you apologize to the black males in this school and their parents. Again, I understand that you may have meant well, but I feel that if you had sent some letters home stating your intentions about having an all black male meeting during school hours, you would have found out that this would not have been politically correct. We all make mistakes and but we must pay even as adults.

Lastly, I want to eliminate the gap between the teachers/staff and students and then we can think about eliminating the education gap.

Sincerely yours,


SIT Member

Concerned Parent

“Our Children Are Our Future”

See related:

Meeting with all black males

Mrs. Bullard

Repost: Meeting with all black males during school hours

P.I.E.C.E. (pEOPLE Interested In Enhancing Our Children’s Education)

Curmilus Dancy II, President

P.O. Box 1391 Pinetops, NC 27864

252.827.5484 (H & O) 252.314.5484 (M)) 252.827.3003 (Fax)

E-mailto: piece@tarboronc.com



March 13, 2003

Mr. Donald C. Rhodes, Principal

South Edgecombe M.S.

Pinetops, N.C. 27864

Re: Meeting with all black males during school hours

I attended bible study at the local church Pines Chapel on tonight. A parent of a black male asked me what was the meeting about that you had with all the black males. I said I didn’t know and I was just at the school on yesterday for the school improvement team meeting and I didn’t know it was just for little black males. You said it was suppose to be the first Adopt A Student meeting. I didn’t consider this to be a racial thing. Rev. Richard Joyner just happened to be there also. I asked him how did the meeting go and he said he didn’t attend. He told me that he was waiting for you to confirm the date.

When I got home I received several phone calls about your meeting. The parents were upset that they didn’t know anything about the meeting.

I have some serious concerns with the black males being openly and boldly singled out. It is a shame and a disgrace that you would get on the intercom and call all black males to the auditorium during school hours. Are you saying that all black males are failing or have a behavior problem? What kind of message is this sending to the black males, to the white males, to the black females and to the white females? I know the teachers probably don’t have a problem with it. Some parents said they remember you saying at the PTSA meeting that if the black males test scores don’t come up, then the school will not hit the mark in order to get a check at the end of the school year.

I have been listening to you talk about getting some black role models to come to the school and you named a couple. If you noticed I didn’t have much to say. I guess you must heard about my comments at the closing the achievement gap meeting because I said I was tired of others picking out who they think are black role models. I suggested that there be a survey done among the children and let them tell who their role models are.

Ø I would like to know what was presented at the all black male meeting today.

Ø I want to know what you had to say to them. I want to know what did Mr. Randolph say to these males.

Ø Why didn’t you call a meeting with the parents to make them aware of this meeting?

Ø Don’t you think it is about time to call a meeting with the parents to let them know what your game plan is?

Ø Do you think that just because I signed off on the school improvement team plan that I am in an agreement with everything that you are doing?

I am requesting to be informed in writing about any and all meetings that are not considered confidential such as the meeting on today with the black males.

I am a little upset that you didn’t make it clear that the meeting on today was going to be of this nature.

I am requesting that you respond in a timely matter.




See related:

Meeting with all black males

Mrs. Bullard