Jennifer Roberts for U.S. Congress

First of all, I'm new here. Hi. Good to see you. Now, let's get to business.

I read a story in the Observer the other day about Jennifer Roberts. Here's the story. For those of you who live outside of Mecklenburg County, she's the newly-elected Democratic chair of the Mecklenburg County Commissioners. Almost completely unknown outside of her district, Roberts ran for an at-large seat this fall and shocked everyone by receiving the most votes. More than Meck Co. Democratic fixture Parks Helms.

Now, Roberts will be the new chair of the Commissioners, and she has a lot on her plate. But the reason I took note of the story was that she mentioned in a little sidebar that she aspired to one day run for Congress. A light bulb went off over my head. "Where can we find a seat for her?" I first thought of Rep. Sue Myrick, who represents the Ninth District. There are rumors that Myrick might retire soon. The speculation is fed by the rumors that Sen. Elizabeth Dole might retire, leaving the GOP scrambling for a Senate candidate in 2008. If Dole does decide to stay home, Myrick might try and go for the Senate. Or maybe Roberts could challenge Myrick in 2008. Hell, it would a Presidential election, and Mecklenburg County is trending bluer. Maybe she could take her!

I discovered a wrench in the works when I looked up Roberts' voter registration and found that she lives in the 8th District. With any luck, Larry Kissell will be the next Congressman from the 8th District, meaning Roberts couldn't run here. And if Kissell loses, chances are he will be recruited to run again in 208.

So, this is my project, and I invite all of you to join me: we must ascertain whether Myrick plans to retire in 2008 or 2010. If so, we must convince Roberts to move to the 9th District. Also, we must confirm that Larry will run again in 2008 if he does not win this year. If Larry elects not to run, I think we've found our challenger for Robin Hayes in 2008.

Bottom line: Roberts is exactly the kind of candidate who can win. After a few years on the county commissioners, she'll have the name recognition and the connections to launch a strong bid. And with her leadership experience in the community, she'll have the ties for fundraising. She's progressive, smart, capable, and very electable.

Check out her website:
www.jenniferwroberts.net

Comments

District

As proven in the 13th District race you don't have to live in a NC Congressional District to run, though you may have to live in one to win.

Thanks for jumping in. Welcome.

Roberts lives in the same county

that encompasses most of the 10th District. At least I don't think she would be called a carpetbagger. I don't know her street address, but it is probably within walking distance of the 10th.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I didn't think Mecklenburg

I didn't think Mecklenburg County was in the 10th - that's McHenry's district, isn't it? It's pretty red. She's closer to the 9th, I think.

Yup....meant 9th

10th is Lincoln Co, etc.... I'm getting ready to move there from the 12th...got it on my mind. yippeeeeee

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Roberts location

She lives in Elizabeth.

Roberts for NC-09

I think Jennifer Roberts is the perfect candidate to beat Myrick in the 9th. As the top vote-getter for County Commision, she's already proven she can pull in crossover votes. She also ran a great campaign this year and has fantastic name recognition in Mecklenburg County.

Whether Myrick runs or retires, we should draft Roberts to run for the 9th district seat.

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

Funny

Mom and I had this conversation last night. I think Sue will run in Liddy's place and the only person I can think of who might run in her place who could be Roberts would be the current Mayor, Pat McRory.....or is it McCrory? See....horrible name recognition already. :)

Roberts could not win in the 8th. It wouldn't matter how good a candidate she is. She can't pull crossover votes in super conservative Cabarrus and Stanly counties and the rest of the counties despise just about anyone from the great state of Mecklenburg. It's either the 9th or the 12th and I doubt Mel is going to retire now that he's in the majority.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I agree about the 8th

I think the last three elections for that seat have shown us the only shot we have to win is with a rural democrat...not "some liberal from charlotte".

I have been saying for a few weeks that I think Roberts is our best chance at winning the Republican-stronghold 9th district seat. With 115 precincts right here in Mecklenburg she has a huge base to draw from. McCrory might run (which opens up a whole world of exciting possibilities for mayor) but I don't know if he can win Gaston and Union counties.

No matter how it pans out, '08 is sure gonna be fun!

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

Agree 100%

I don't think McCRory will go for a congressional district, though. I think his ego would see that as a lateral move. I'm wondering if he will make a play for the Governor's mansion or senate. Either way, you're right, '08 is shaping up already.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Insider Info

80% chance that Pat is go for NC-09 in '08.

Yes, I know Republicans.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

So...

Is the other 20% the likelihood that Myrick doesn't retire, or is it possible that McCrory won't go for it at all?

first one

Sam has informed me that he hears rumors Pat might run anyway.

HelpLarry.com

"Keep the Faith"

I never said Mayor Pat would take on Myrick

Pittinger might, but not Pat.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Pat McCrory Mayor of Charlotte

for too long. He's a pretty likeable guy and gets a lot of Dem support - like our Sheriff gets a lot of Rep support. If he chose to run again I do think Jennifer Roberts could beat him. I know she could beat a Rep in an open seat.

McCrory got some face time during the last presidential race and that turned me off from him politically.



Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

JR would have a much better chance in the 8th than in the 9th

Chairman-elect Roberts isn't going to end her metoric rise by bothering with the 9th district. And I'm sure she's running at-large again in 2008, simply because of the lack of talent we could be faced with. In the 8th, assuming the worst for Larry and that Robin retires in 2010, Roberts would do wonderfully because she knows how to campaign and people like her. People forget about party when they vote for her. That's what made Larry so great, and that's why Roberts is the only Mecklenburger who should ever attempt to win that seat. Even Vinroot's given money to Jennifer.

Especially after the 8th shed red precincts to the 9th, the demographics are going to continually turn away any serious challengers from going after the Myrick seat.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

I disagree completely

People do not forget about party when they vote for Jennifer Roberts. She can get crossover votes in Mecklenburg, especially when Republicans voted for her in an attempt to keep Parks Helms out. The art of the single-shot vote. Jennifer does not have the background that would excite the conservative Democrats outside of Mecklenburg.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I agree. I don't think

I agree. I don't think Roberts plays very well outside of Meck Co. She would do very well uniting urban voters and suburbanites, but I don't see her having the rural appeal that Larry has.

I'm with SD on this one

I love Jennifer Roberts but I can't see folks in Cumberland cozying up to a candidate that speaks at Charlotte Pride and the 'Impeach Bush' rally.

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

Was it an "Impeach Bush"

Was it an "Impeach Bush" rally or an anti-war rally? Let's face it, the 9th is getting redder, and we need to make sure we're running a candidate that moderates and conservatives can feel comfortable with. I know, it doesn't feel good, but this is NC.

I think she was

at both events, but may have only spoken at the antiwar rally.

I agree that any candidate needs to have crossover appeal and Jennifer Roberts fits that bill. She has a base in Mecklenburg that includes liberals, moderates and even some conservatives.

But I have to make this point...

Mecklenburg has the largest portion of the 9th district (115 precincts) where Roberts has earned good name recognition and a solid reputation as a moderate legislator while maintaining more liberal positions on the issues. This works in Mecklenburg where we elect democratic majorities on the city council and county commission while supporting a republican mayor. The 9th is urban, diverse and has a constant influx of new voters from the liberal northeast.

In contrast, Mecklenburg has only 29 precincts in the 8th, which is made up primarily of rural conservative counties like Cumberland, Stanly, Anson, Montgomery. Roberts has no name recognition or track record to offset her "liberal charlotte" background. Voters in this district were sporting Larry Kissell bumper stickers right next to their Re-elect Bush/Cheney stickers. The 8th is rural, blue collar, pro-military and even the democrats are conservative.

Roberts can win in the 9th and can't win in the 8th.

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

Well said. Anybody have any

Well said. Anybody have any concrete information on when Myrick is thinking of retiring? Obviously, it's a lot easier to take an open seat than to tackle an incumbent as entrenched as Myrick.

Name Recognition is not a problem in the 8th

Since the opponent would have low name recognition too, and Jennifer would slaughter her opponent when it came to meeting people all over the district.

In the 9th, she'll probably face someone with more name recognition (McCrory), possibly a moderate (compared to Sue) who would steal Democratic votes (McCrory), in a district where there aren't enough Democratic votes to start out.

An independent with high name recognition could possibly win the ninth absent a Democratic candidate. A Democrat could beat Bob Ney or Mark Foley in the 9th, but that's about it. A democrat would need at least $3 million to win the Ninth, and nobody is ever going to give a Democrat that much money for that district.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Sam

Hayes has excellent name recognition. At what point has he told you he was retiring? I mean, I know you know Republicans and all....but what exactly are you hearing?

Jennifer actually ran in the 9th this past year since her race was county-wide. She has very good name recognition in the Mecklenburg County portion of the 9th. As a matter of fact, as the top vote getter in the county commission race, she probably has better name recognition than any other Democrat (aside from Jim Black) and most Republicans.

An Independent can't win in the 9th, since an Independent can't run. North Carolina recognizes only two parties - Democrats and Republicans. I'm aware this can change, but third parties have dismal luck here in NC if they can even get on the ballot.



Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Sorry if I didn't make it clear

that I'm operating on the assumption that Jennifer would run in an open seat race. Larry's the only Dem that can beat Hayes, IMHO. I have no idea when Robin would retire.

Also, independents can run without a party, as you know. I'm thinking a former Republican running as an I, collecting the signatures ... they would have a better shot than a Dem assuming they had the money and under the table Dem support, and everything I'm talking about in this paragraph has less than a .1% chance of ever happpening.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Not only that

Her campaign was masterfully run. I can respect that. She meant business. I honestly think she should run in '08. I can't wait to see her lead the commission.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Jennifer didn't get votes

Jennifer didn't get votes from Republicans to get rid of Parks. All the research I've ever done on how voters think in the booth says that that strategy is way too complicated for 95% of voters. Jennifer got cross-over votes because she meets a lot of people and most of these people like her. She got conservative Democrats and moderate Republicans in parts of the county that disdain Democratic leadership.

And nothing anyone has said backs up the thesis that she'd do better in the 9th. I like conservative Democrats more than conservative Republicans, and the 9th is conservative Republican country. Jennifer would reach conservative Democrats better in the 8th than she would conservative Republicans in the 9th.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Gee Sam

I don't think voters would appreciate the fact that someone who just ran for County Commission and I'm sure plans to run again, thinks that 95% of them are too moronic to understand the impact of the single shot vote. ;)

I've been researching probably a good 20 years longer than you have...maybe even longer. In that time, I've met quite a few voters who not only understand the concept of strategic voting, but use it frequently to shape their at-large choices. In an at-large race with this level of turnout, it doesn't take a huge number of these votes to make a serious impact. In other words, we aren't talking about tens of thousands of voters using this option.

Nothing you've said backs up your assertion that Jennifer would do better in the 8th. Furthermore, I suggest you read the comments again. Working For Change has some very astute observations.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I didn't say that ;-)

And I'm not dismissing your dearth of experience. But the ninth is suicide. The registration numbers and pattern of voting back up my assertion more than I ever could.

And we're both saying a small amount of people would use one shotting, and I don't see informed republicans so obsessed with defeating Parks that they would eschew a chance at getting 2 or 3 county commissioners in a year that looked really good for the Meck GOP (again, thank God for Jennifer). But IMHO, more swing voters voted for Jennifer based on voter contact and her sunny personality than because of a concerted effort to defeat Parks. When it comes to voting I'm an Occam's razor kind of guy, even if that is an assumption.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

I'm just picking on you

you young whipper snapper. You did basically say that 95% of the voters aren't smart enough to figure out single shot voting. That's totally different from my saying it only takes a small number to impact the outcome.....which it does.

Now...forget about the 8th and the 9th. What do you think about Jennifer for Mayor? I hadn't considered that and I honestly do believe she would be perfect. I know that both Anthony Foxx and Malcolm Graham have made noise about it. I think Malcolm will get impatient waiting for Mel to retire. I had also heard Susan Burgess floated as a possibility however when we were canvassing together and talking about possible candidates, she did not indicate an interest. I also didn't directly ask her.

I think Foxx is too inexperienced for Mayor and I really don't see Malcolm in the spot, either. I'm sure he would do a fine job. I think Susan is too polarizing. What do you think about Jennifer?



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Susan actually got a Rhino Times endorsement last year

But I don't talk about the mayoral race anywhere where it can be googled for a number of reasons. You'll have to ask me that one in person.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

You're right, Sam

A conservative democrat working a farm in Anson County will love Gay Pride-supportin' Jennifer Roberts way, way more than a banker from Mecklenburg County ever could.

Very astute.

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

Ouch

Hey, I know a few gay Republican bankers in Charlotte, so I get your point ...

BUT, and I swear to God I'm not being naive here, but I have a sincere belief that the Gay card doesn't work nearly as well anymore. And I think that voters in Anson County would meet Jennifer and percieve someone with unimpeachable integrity and a commitment to service before they saw someone who was trying to destroy their values.

Also, food for thought: Jennifer could raise enough money to run in the 8th, but not enough to run in the 9th.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

I still love you, Sam

I just don't agree about the 8th.

I use the Gay Pride thing as one example of why JR would be received as too liberal for the 8th. Her open anti-war stance and her support of immigrant rights (she spoke at that Charlotte rally, too) are just a few of the other positions that rural democrats across the 8th would shy away from.

I love Jennifer Robert's positions on all these issues and would support her run for the 9th every step of the way. I would just hate to see her talent wasted on an unsuccessful bid for the 8th.

Robin Hayes Hates Puppies

The 8th's a moot point now that Larry's gonna win in 08

But the 9th is still a political death sentence, and it's a two step process - you have to get a talented person who isn't just a lamb for the slaughter to put together a network and a ground operation and a fundraising network, and then you have to get a super talented person to run and try and win, and even then they won't get 45%. I've never doubted Jennifer's abilities, and I predicted she'd beat Parks, but I don't think anyone could ever convince her to run in the 9th. I'm glad they can't.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

Either way

It's time to take on Myrick.

A wise person told me recently that the best time to be exposing the incompetence and negligence of incumbents is BEFORE they have a specific challenger to blame.

SD: Can we get a band of Charlotte folks engaged enough to help?

Absolutely, right.

There is a band working on it, but it will remain behind the scenes for a while. One of the things that happened with the Kissell campaign is that a bunch of us were brought together and found we work well as a team. We are still organizing and planning. We've learned a lot from each other. One woman is a real expert in GOTV planning. That's what she does professionally. We'll work our plan and 2008 should certainly be an easier, more organized campaign cycle for all.

I started in on Myrick last year, but after a couple of posts I switched to Hayes...can't for the life of me remember why. :) I think we probably have a few here at BlueNC who will participate in some opposition research. Actually, I think with time on our hands, there will be a good number of us keeping track of these critters.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Great, thanks.

Glad to know you're on this. Maybe it'll preempt my need to write a long and whining entry called "What's Wrong With Charlotte?"

:)

Laughing my fanny off

I can answer that in one sentence......

But this is now a "G" rated site so I might get kicked off for saying it. :)

I actually have some invites out for folks to blog here. I'm hoping someone will take me up on it. I have this love-hate relationship with my hometown and I don't seem to be doing a good job of coming up with stories.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

no please

Dont let it preempt it.

HelpLarry.com

"Keep the Faith"

Jennifer Roberts is outstanding

I volunteered for her reelection. She visited every part of Mecklenburg and ran a positive and inclusive campaign. As a gay Charlottean I appreciate that she has been very supportive of our issues and since Roberts and Parks Helms were both reelected At Large, Mecklenburg will continue to move in a progressive direction. But I just don't know how well she would play statewide outside of the Blue enclaves. She spoke at Charlotte Pride and at a Moveon.Org Peace Vigil this past year and while I loved her speeches you can bet that most North Carolinians won't appreciate them. As much as I like her I think she would be a better fit as Mayor of Charlotte. She is very liberal on social issues but she governs with a centrist and fair minded approach. Charlotte is getting Bluer by the day and I think it's about time we had a Progressive Democrat in the Mayor's Office.

Thanks for the insight

I confess that the whole Charlotte scene baffles me . . . but it's great to have you here weighing in. Whichever way she goes, it sounds like Ms. Roberts is a rising star worth keeping an eye on.

If you know her or know someone who knows her, please invite her to come on over and help us understand what the heck is going on in Charlotte!

(If she's not already dipping her toes in blogging, she might as well get going, and this is as good a place to start as any!)

Thanks!

I really hadn't thought about her for Mayor

That would be a bright spot on our horizon. My conversation with mom started b/c of Jennifer's personal goal as stated in the Observer. Neither of us even thought about Jennifer for Mayor. I can get behind that idea 100%. Dems have not had a great track record running for Mayor recently, but I don't think it's because Charlotte won't elect a Dem.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

quite the opposite

Given the results of the past two elections I cant see how Charlotte could NOT elect someone like Jennifer mayor. The real question is, can Charlotte's party/activists get its act together enough to do it.

HelpLarry.com

"Keep the Faith"

Well, she won't run a year

Well, she won't run a year after being elected chairperson, and a democrat's going to win in '07 especially with McCrory possibly bowing out.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

For the record

Roberts did speak at Charlotte Pride this past year at it's new location at Gateway Village and The event at Freedom Park was an Anti-War Vigil attended by a combination of grandmothers,couples and a mix of singles like myself. It looked like a church picnic. But we are always termed as crazy wild eyed radicals by the media. LOL. Okay, I don't want to get too far off topic. Roberts did draw Republican support during her successful reelection campaign. Many Meck Republicans were turned off by the local party's gay bashing attack ad on Parks Helms, which in turn bolstered Roberts as well. People in Mecklenburg have long memories and were not going to go back to the "Gang of Five" days. Unfortunately, such negative tactics would have a better chance of working in more rural counties which dominate the state. Roberts does have a great likeability factor though and she may have a shot of winning over the social conservatives because of her overall moderate tone.

You have to watch those crazy grandma types

Terrorists, every last one. ;)

The Gang of Five is hard to forget in my family. Mom was ousted that year by the gang. I was living in Ohio at the time and fortunately corrective action had been taken by the time I moved back. I didn't have to live through it, but boy did I hear stories.

Welcome to BlueNC.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

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