Fighting for Working Families
Fighting for Working Families
Now is a critical time in North Carolina’s future. We are at a crossroads. Either we will have a government that is focused on: helping people through these tough economic times with a focus on job creation not depletion, providing meaningful support for a world class education for all children (not taking us to 49th nationally in per pupil spending), protecting our ground water and air quality from deliberate contamination, respecting a woman’s right to control her body and make decisions for her own healthcare, embracing and supporting the diversity within our society, protecting people from racial discrimination in the administration of our laws, encouraging and supporting everyone’s right to vote; or, we will have a radical social agenda that rejects the fundamental values we hold so dear.
On the floor of the House, Bill has spoken out against the radical efforts to take away that which we hold so dear and the boondoggle “special sessions” that waste our tax dollars without doing anything to help us. Bill challenged the Republican leadership to take up my jobs plan which was supported by 70 percent of the House Democrats, and Bill confronted the leadership in writing and in person when they stubbornly refused to deal with the critical issue of unemployment affecting more than 500,000 North Carolinians.
Bill has taken on and debated both Pat McCrory (the likely Republican Gubernatorial candidate) and Tom Tillis (the Republican Speaker of the House) on the television show “Flash Point.” Bill has been providing the Democratic leadership on our issues.
Now, with your contribution and help, Bill will go on to be our Party’s gubernatorial nominee and will defeat Pat McCrory this Fall.
Bill on JOBS
Jobs, Jobs, and More Jobs: The Republican Budget put approximately 36,000 people out of work. Thirty-five (35 ) of my House Democratic colleagues and I have a plan to put them all back to work. The Budget let the one cent sales tax expire last summer. If we were to cut that penny by thirty percent and roll a fractional seven tenths of a cent sales tax back into the Budget we could put back to work all of the teachers, teachers aides, and other State employees fired by the Republican Budget (6,455 people), rehire the 15,415 private sector jobs lost because of cuts to Medicaid and SCHIP (State Children's Health Insurance Program), and rehire the other private sector jobs lost because of the economic effects of the other job losses.
Bill on Small Businesses
Help Small Businesses Hire: Small businesses, those hiring less than 20 employees, make up 86.7 percent of all employers. Big businesses have had plenty of tax breaks but not the little guy. We need to modernize our tax code to give small businesses an incentive to hire. We can pay for these incentives by closing tax loopholes. A Department of Revenue Study in 2009 found $5.8 billion in tax loopholes and that four years earlier, sixty five percent of regular C corps filed tax returns showing no tax due.
Bill on Tax Policy
Repeal the New $39 million Tax Loophole: In the midst of the Great Recession, with $5.8 billion in tax loopholes already on the books, the Senate Republican leadership passed a new tax loophole for multi-state businesses. It allows a business to move all of the money earned in NC to another state without paying any NC income tax. Everyone has to do their part to get through these tough economic times. Additional big business tax loopholes put more of a burden on the rest of us.
Bill on Education
Stop the Educational Race to the Bottom: NC is known nationally for our commitment to education at every level. The Republican Budget took us to 49th nationally in per pupil educational spending. This is not good enough for our kids. We must embrace technology, ensure broadband access for all families and ensure a workforce for the future.
Bill on the Environment and Energy
Save Our Water, Protect Our Wells and Pursue Smart Energy Policies: The Republican leadership seems to be driven by motivating their biggest contributors to to give more money rather than serving the needs of the people. Their fracking bill is an example of this effort. The bill chases oil at the expense of safe drinking water, coastal estuaries and coastal tourism jobs. They put $500 million in the bill for well damage and then say they will not damage a well. We must protect our wells and drinking water, while supporting a smart energy policy.
Bill on Social Agendas
Respect Women, the Privacy of their Medical Care, and Doctors' Ability to Treat Patients Without Legislative Micromanagement: Our Legislature should support individual rights over the power of government. It is a basic American principle that people have inalienable rights on which governments should not tread. The Republican Legislative leadership passed legislation telling women what they must do to get medical care in support of their right to choose. These are very personal matters where women are guided by their faith, their family and the independent counsel of their physician. The Legislation intentionally makes very difficult personal decisions even more difficult by trying to embarrass, intimidate, and place guilt on women. The Legislation went on to interfere with the relationship between women and their doctors by telling doctors what must be said to women, shown to the women and enacting criminal penalties to enforce it. We cannot let these social agendas prevail.
Bill on Right to Vote
Protect Peoples' Right to Vote: Our right to vote is critical to our democracy. The Republican Leadership seems to believe that many folks living in inner cities, using public transportation and foregoing drivers' licenses vote Democratic or Unaffiliated. Moreover, they believe that older folks who have given up driving also make up a meaningful part of the Democratic and Unaffiliated vote. In a blatant effort to take the vote away from these folks, they passed legislation requiring specific IDs as a condition for voting. Their strategy to 'end run' a veto of this Act is to pass local legislation doing the same thing ("local legislation" affects no more than 50 counties and is thus not subject to veto). After all, the bulk of the Democratic and Unaffiliated vote is concentrated in less than 50 counties.
Bill on Racial Justice
No One Should Be Put to Death Because of the Color of Their Skin: The Democratic Legislature passed the Racial Justice Act almost three years ago. The Act says that if someone can show that a death penalty was imposed because of race, then the sentence is changed to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The issue is presented to the very same judges who impose the death penalty and allows testimony from prosecutors, court personal and others along with statistical information. Sometimes the truth is in the numbers. The standard is difficult to meet but a very important question to ask. Prior to this last Session few votes were taken on party line votes. This bill was one of those few. All Republicans voted against it when the Act was before the Legislature and all Democrats but one voted for it on final reading. Now the Republicans have repealed the Act in another party line vote. I helped get the Act through the Legislature and fought against its repeal. No one should be put to death because of the color of their skin.
Bill on Divisive Social Agendas and Constitutional Amendments
Don't Waste Our Money On Divisive Constitutional Amendments That Do Nothing: The Legislature adjourned in June after passing one of the worst Budgets ever. Since then the Republican Leadership has brought us back into Session repeatedly to do one meaningless thing after another at a cost of $50,000 a day. Before they are done they will waste $1.1 million of our money on unnecessary Sessions that do nothing meaningful. Among the meaningless activities is a Constitutional Amendment that does nothing more than confirm a law that has gone unchallenged for more that a decade. That law says marriage is only between a man and a woman. The Republican Leadership is playing divisive partisan politics. They want to put this well-settled law into our Constitution, not to change the law, but to bring out their base.
I believe in family. All families. Amendment One is not about protecting families. The Amendment will do nothing to encourage or support families. Our Constitution is both special and precious. It should only be altered for a very good reason. The Legislature's focus should be on jobs and the economy. I hope you will join with me and my family in support of all families. I respect, value and encourage families. In this time of economic challenge, families need help and support.
Bill on Making Government Work
We Need to Make Government Work for People: Everyone knows that Republicans do not make Government work for people. This Legislative Session they have demonstrated over and over again that they will not effectively govern. They have shown this by sacrificing our kids' education (NC is now 49th Nationally in Educational Spending) and healthcare (big cuts to SCHIP), firing people (this Budget) while increasing big corporate loopholes (Senate $39 million additional tax loophole for multi-state corps), and chasing corporate-based political contributions while taking away individual rights. The role of government is to serve the interests of the people. Effective governing is about pooling resources to educate, provide services and infrastructure, and improve the quality of life for everyone. Democrats have a proven track record of getting the job done. The Republicans have proven, yet again, that they cannot get it done.