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NC Alternative Parties Hail Passage of Major Ballot Access Reform Bill

North Carolina’s Libertarian, Green, and Constitution parties issued this statement in response to the General Assembly's override of the governor's veto of a major ballot access reform bill:

Libertarians Say Repeal HB2

The Libertarian Party of North Carolina has joined the growing list of organizations calling for the repeal of House Bill 2.

"The state has no authority to determine gender," the unanimous resolution states. HB 2 also “unduly intrudes state authority into local decision-making and unreasonably limits the ability of the citizens ... to govern themselves.”

In addition, the bill reduces individual rights because it “bans citizens from using state courts to remedy discrimination”

Duke Dilemma: Can utility companies be clean and safe and keep costs down?

by J.J. Summerell

While I'm no apologist for Duke Energy, I understand the dilemma the company faces in responding to the Dan River coal-ash spill.

Because we must buy electricity, and Duke Energy is virtually the state’s only provider, it is a natural monopoly. Why would it have faced any financial barriers to ensuring the environmental safety of its power plants and transmission facilities? Microeconomics theory indicates that Duke could have easily raised prices to cover the costs of environmental-protection measures.

That didn't happen because Duke operates in a contradictory regulatory environment.

NC Libertarians support non-partisan redistricting

Press release from the Libertarian Party of North Carolina

RALEIGH (April 15) - Adding a plank supporting an independent, non-partisan redistricting process was one of the changes made to the platform at the Libertarian Party of North Carolina state convention held April 4-5 in Durham.

Libertarians also adopted a plank calling for proportional representation for the state legislature.

New voters continue to shun major parties

The number of voters registering in a major party continues to decline in North Carolina, even as the total number of registered voters in continues to rise. As of Nov. 2, there were 6,475,017 registered voters: 2,764,123 registered Democrats, 1,990,192 registered Republicans, 22,173 registered Libertarians, and 1,698,529 registered unaffiliated.

The decline in the percentage of voters registered as Republicans or Democrats reached a new record low of 42.69 percent. The number of unaffiliated voters is now at 26.23 percent and the Libertarian portion is at 0.34 percent.

Libertarians oppose more restrictions on voting rights

Press release from the Libertarian Party of North Carolina

by J.J. Summerell
Chair, Libertarian Party of North Carolina

RALEIGH (July 24) - Just when it didn't seem possible that North Carolina's election laws could get more restrictive, the Republican majority has come up with a massive bill that would make it even harder for people to vote.

Using the excuse that they are trying to combat voter fraud, the Republicans want to perpetrate an even greater fraud on North Carolina voters under the guise of restoring “confidence in government.”

Republicans claim to be the party of limited government. Now we see what that term really means: when Republicans say limited government, they apparently mean government limited to them and their supporters.

Libertarians call 'Tax Fairness Act' unfair

RALEIGH (May 14) – The tax reform plan announced by state Senate Republicans last week is just another charade designed to make people think they are actually reducing taxes, the Libertarian Party of North Carolina state chair said in a statement today.

“Calling it the Tax Fairness Act and claiming it's the largest tax cut in state history is misleading at best,” said J.J. Summerell. “Taxes are inherently unfair. The only difference between taxes proposed by Republicans and Democrats is which special interest group is going to benefit and which is going to pay.”

Libertarians oppose welfare for (Met)Life

RALEIGH (April 18) – The awarding of nearly $100 million in “corporate incentives” to MetLife, one of the largest insurance companies in the world, is a classic example of state and local governments playing the game of Reverse Robin Hood, robbing from the poor to give to the rich, a state Libertarian Party spokesman said in a statement today.

J.J. Summerell, Libertarian Party of North Carolina chair, said the party denounces all such corporate welfare as fiscally irresponsible and the practices should be stopped immediately.

Voter Freedom Act filed in state House

Rep. Jason Saine (R-Lincolnton) has introduced House Bill 794 Voter Freedom Act of 2013 to dramatically lower the ballot access barrier for new political parties and unaffiliated candidates.

House Bill 794 has bipartisan sponsors, Representatives Paul Luebke (D-Durham), David Lewis (R-Dunn), and Rodney Moore (D-Mecklenberg). A broad and diverse coalition of political parties and public policy groups from across the political spectrum also backs the bill.

The Voter Freedom Act of 2013 would reduce the number of signatures a new political party must collect to qualify for the ballot from nearly 90,000 to about 11,000. The bill would also make it easier for new parties to retain ballot access, by reducing the number of votes they must get to about 11,000 votes.

Ballot access reform bill still alive

An election bill that would dramatically lower the threshold for a new political party to gain and maintain ballot access in North Carolina may still be considered by the state General Assembly when it reconvenes in July. H.B. 32, The Electoral Freedom Act of 2011, passed the House in a bipartisan 68-49 vote, but the Senate adjourned before considering the measure.

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