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Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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STAND WITH NC OR STAY IN BED WITH THE NRA? The National Rifle Association has spent $11.6 million in North Carolina congressional elections – almost all of it on Sens. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis. That’s around $682,000 for each of the dead in Parkland, Florida. It is $79,710 for each of the 138 school house dead nationwide since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. The NRA’s investment has paid off — to the benefit of gun manufacturers. Sales of non-essential military-style assault weapons skyrocketed. Meanwhile, the lavish campaign spending effectively thwarted any reasonable, constitutional laws to keep these inappropriate and dangerous weapons away from the public. This is not about doing away with the 2nd Amendment or in any way limiting anyone’s right to hunt. It is about common sense. It is about representing the voters of the state – a majority of whom support a ban on assault weapons.
http://www.wral.com/editorial-stand-with-nc-or-stay-in-bed-with-the-nra/17355270/

Saturday News: "Help! I'm being oppressed!"

COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST NC GOP SPURS DALLAS TO WAIL ABOUT "POLICE POWERS": The North Carolina Democratic Party asked Attorney General Josh Stein’s office to investigate a recorded call state Republican Party Executive Director Dallas Woodhouse made to registered Republicans seeking candidates for office. The attorney general’s consumer division sent the state GOP a letter Wednesday asking for a response to the complaint and proposed resolution. Stein and the Democratic Party are trying to intimidate Republicans, Woodhouse said. They “attempted to use the full weight and police powers of the North Carolina Department of Justice to intimidate its rival political party, the Republicans, from making calls to voters and asking them to run for office,” Woodhouse said. Laura Brewer, Stein’s spokeswoman, said Woodhouse is overreacting. “There is no merit to any of these hysterical claims,” she said in an email.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article201895974.html

Friday News: Ineffective and incompetent

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MOORE SAYS NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO DEBATE GUNS, CAN'T WE LOCK THE SCHOOL DOORS? “Folks want to try to drag the gun debate into it,” Moore said in the television interview. “Look, that’s a discussion for another time.” The state Democratic Party condemned Moore for rejecting a debate about guns. “Speaker Moore’s tone-deaf comments are shocking and infuriating,” NC Democratic Party Executive Director Kimberly Reynolds said in a statement. “We have a gun epidemic in this country that nearly every American wants to seriously address, yet one of the most powerful legislators in our state is shutting the door on common sense reforms just days after the Parkland shooting.” Moore told journalists Thursday he wanted to focus on solutions that can win support from both sides. "We can agree, for example, that we need to enhance the security of the schools. If somebody shouldn’t be in the school, by golly they ought to not be able to get in. Is there a way that doors can lock better?”
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article201630399.html

Thursday News: Because the Constitution

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GOP FACES ANOTHER LAWSUIT OVER FOUR WAKE COUNTY DISTRICTS: Attorneys for the state NAACP, League of Women Voters, Democracy North Carolina, the A. Philip Randolph Institute and four named voters want the courts to change four Wake County districts back to what they looked like in 2011. That was before the GOP majority was forced to redraw the state's House and Senate election maps in a federal case brought by much the same legal team and which found racial gerrymanders in a number of districts statewide. The plaintiffs' lawyers in that case argued repeatedly that Republican legislators violated the North Carolina Constitution in that redraw because they changed district lines they didn't have to. Absent a court order, the state constitution forbids redrawing districts more than once a decade, a process undertaken after the U.S. census produces new population numbers. Attorneys argued Republican leaders didn't have to redraw the four Wake County House districts targeted in this latest case to address the previous racial gerrymander. Those four districts are 36, 37, 40 and 41.
http://www.wral.com/injunction-sought-could-delay-legislative-primaries-in-wake/17360781/

Wednesday News: Not-so-silent Sam

UNC WARNS OF POTENTIAL WHITE NATIONALIST RALLY ON CAMPUS TODAY: UNC-Chapel Hill officials warned of possible trouble on campus as rumors swirled of a white nationalist rally planned for Wednesday. Kevin Guskiewicz, dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, sent a message to deans and department chairs, saying word has spread that “individuals not affiliated with UNC-Chapel Hill” are planning a “Rally for Nationalism.” He did not mention the expected time or location of the rally. But a student activist sent a notice to media calling attention to what they characterized as a neo-Nazi group planning to be on campus Wednesday. The students plan a counterprotest to “unify UNC” at 2 p.m. at the South Building, home to the office of Chancellor Carol Folt and other administrators.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article201207599.html

Tuesday News: PC Police?

CONSERVATIVE DOTARD DEVELOPS USELESS SOLUTION FOR SCHOOL SHOOTINGS: In the wake of a shooting in Florida that left 17 high school students dead, a North Carolina legislator is encouraging people to report suspicious behavior – even if it means defying what he called the “PC police.” State Sen. Ronald Rabin, a Republican from Harnett County, is worried some people won’t report suspicious behavior because they’re afraid of being seen as insensitive, he said in a Facebook post and interview Monday. "All Must call! The problem is that the politically correct police make it a “no-no” to say anything that may hurt feelings or offend anyone in any way,” Rabin posted. He continued: “Folks be alert, watch and report. Law enforcement react. This is the best deterrent to these acts of violence. Do not let the unidentified, ubiquitous PC Police interfere with stopping these heinous acts.”
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/politics-columns-blogs/under-the-dome/article20...

Monday News: Tone deaf and self-absorbed

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SHOOTING SURVIVORS BLAST TRUMP FOR USING MASSACRE FOR POLITICAL ATTACKS: Students who escaped the deadly school shooting in Florida are focusing their anger at President Donald Trump, contending that his response to the attack has been needlessly divisive. David Hogg, a 17-year-old student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, said: 'You're the president. You're supposed to bring this nation together, not divide us.' Hogg on "Meet the Press" Sunday was responding to Trump's tweet Saturday that Democrats hadn't passed any gun control measures during the brief time they controlled Congress with a supermajority in the Senate. Trump also alluded to the FBI's failure to act on tips that the suspect was dangerous, while bemoaning the bureau's focus on Russia's role in the 2016 election. After more than a day of criticism from the students, the White House says the president would hold a "listening session" with unspecified students on Wednesday and meet with state and local security officials Thursday.
http://www.wral.com/the-latest-shooting-survivors-plan-march-on-washington/17351678/

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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NO FREE RIDES IN 2018 ELECTION: There is one very important reason. Every candidate, particularly incumbents, should be forced to account for their actions and views. There is no better way than through election campaigns with persistent candidates who make their views known, contrast them with their opponents’ and force the opposing candidates to explain for themselves. While some may want to keep interest in elections low to keep voters away from the polls, contested campaigns generate participation and increase turnout. That is a good thing. It is one of the great strengths of American democracy and a virtue of regular and frequent elections. When nearly half the state legislature arrives in office without any accountability to the voters, it inevitably leads to excesses and abuses of power – the kinds that have been clogging our courts for the last seven years. In the United States, the most power is in the hands of each citizen through their vote. Don’t be relinquished to the sidelines. Don’t let others take your say away from you.
http://www.wral.com/editorial-no-free-rides-in-2018-elections/17334348/

Saturday News: It's Mueller time...

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13 RUSSIANS INDICTED FOR MEDDLING IN 2016 ELECTION: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced the indictment of 13 Russians as a brazen scheme “with the stated goal of spreading distrust” toward the U.S. political system, but the charges lay out a litany of cyber skullduggery aimed at a narrower mission: boosting Donald Trump and bashing Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election. The grand jury charges, secured by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, are replete with examples of how an 80-member team, allegedly bankrolled by a crony of Russian President Vladimir Putin, managed to flood American cyberspace with social media messages backing Trump or echoing some of his campaign’s harshest anti-Clinton themes. The Russians’ tilt toward Trump began in early and mid-2016, it charges – not late in the campaign as previously believed.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/nation-world/national/article200653109.html

Friday News: Unfair and Imbalanced

FOX NEWS' CONSERVATIVE PARROT TUCKER CARLSON TO LECTURE UNC JOURNALISM STUDENTS: Fox News TV commentator Tucker Carlson will be the featured speaker in a distinguished lecture series at the UNC School of Media and Journalism in April – a choice that has drawn scorn on social media. “This makes me want to turn my diploma around to face the wall,” Leslie Cohig Gura chimed in. The criticism comes at a time when ideological balance and free speech are hotly debated topics on U.S. campuses, including the passage of a campus free speech law by the state legislature and a new policy by the UNC Board of Governors. The policy calls for public universities to punish those who substantially disrupt campus speakers.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article200375894.html

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