Richard Moore BlueNC Debate Thread

Welcome State Treasurer Richard Moore and thank you for participating in the BlueNC Gubernatorial Debate.

Richard Moore and Bev Perdue will face off in the NC primary election on May 6, 2008. Tonight is your chance to ask Richard Moore the questions that will help you decide how you will vote in May. Please follow below the fold to view the debate, leave questions and respond to Richard Moore's answers to your questions.


Technology and transparency

Thank you again for joining us. The debate officially begins at 7:45. In the next few minutes, please take your time and think through our first question:

Many progressive voters are unhappy with North Carolina's tradition of back-room deals. What actions will you take to challenge the good-old-boy system that permits powerful politicians to put special interests ahead of citizen interests?

Specifically, how will you use technology to create more advantages for North Carolina citizens?

To our readers:

We'll be posting some "big" questions like these every 15 minutes ... and we encourage you to follow up with your own questions as well.

Welcome Richard Moore!

The debate is officially on!

Hello BlueNCers!

Hello BlueNCers! I want to thank James Protzman and Betsy Muse for putting this forum together. I always welcome the opportunity to discuss my plans for moving North Carolina forward, and we are certainly breaking new ground in how that discussion is taking place tonight. I think it’s a great thing anytime people can get excited about politics – and there’s certainly a lot more excitement this year with our finally having a say in the Presidential contest.

But it’s also important to make sure that the energy out there doesn’t just fade away once the election passes. And by building a sustainable organization online, you’re working toward a long-term strategy that can push back against the forces on the other side and keep people engaged in the political process. I’m happy to take part in this forum tonight, and I look forward to answering your questions.

Thank you, Richard Moore

We appreciate your participation and look forward to your responses.

Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Thank you for being here, sir

There's a ton of traffic and even though we've stress-tested the site, it does appear to be running a little more slowly than expected.

Thank you again.

I turned off pictures, seems to be working faster.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

State Retirment Fund

As a retired state employee, I'm interested in the long-range health of our state retirement. How does the N.C. retirement system rank with others in the country in soundness of investment, growth, and assurance that there will be funds to cover all retirees.

Along those lines.

Why do we need a public option for retirement? The TSERS? Why not just for-profit based retirement?

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Pension Fund 2nd Best in Nation

Retirees should be very confident that their retirement is in good shape. We have been ranked the 2nd strongest state retirement fund in the country for three years in a row by Standard & Poor's. We are one of only a handful of states that can say we can meet the promises we've made to our retirees.

Can you define 2nd strongest?

What are the criteria that Standard & Poor uses? Return on investment? Good return over time?

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Thank you.

I'm going to stick with the questions that James will be posting. I look forward to reading your responses.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Budget Reform

Across the board North Carolina needs to be taking advantage of new technologies that will provide more transparency and access in state government.

Specifically, I’ve released a budget reform proposal that will help to cut wasteful spending and decrease the influence of special interests by forcing legislators to defend their budget provisions in a public forum. For too long, lawmakers have used closed door meetings to sneak unaccountable slush funds into the budget. If they were forced to defend those provisions publicly – and the press and the blogosphere had the chance to point out what’s in there before it’s voted on – we’d go a long ways toward increasing accountability in the legislature.

Budget hearings should be public and they should be broadcast on the web using streaming video – and changes to the budget should be made out in the open, not in some back room. Also, there should be at least one week where the public has the chance to review the budget online and contact your representatives before a final vote.

Would you make more information searchable?

Also, would you make more meetings available on the web. Right now I think the GA meetings, but not committees are streamed on the web. I might be incorrect about that, Greg Flynn, you out there?

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.


Audio streams from the house and senate floor are available.

Meeting Minutes from most "executive branch" groups are also available.

But committee meetings are difficult to follow as I dont think they even release minutes. Also, amendments to bills are only available in hard copy, so you have to know what you are looking for to figure out changes from version to version of most bills.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"


What additional public records and documents would you make available onlne?

Ken Ripley

Ken Ripley

Streaming of committees only if the meetings are in certain rooms and on mike.

House Chamber
Senate Chamber
Finance Committee Room (Rm 544)
Appropriations Committee Room (Rm 643)
Press Conference Room

Tech follow-up

What about streaming video and/or audio for ALL committee meetings?

Environment and economy

One state will become THE leader in the Green Economy, known worldwide for its forward-looking policies for alternative energy. Are you prepared to make North Carolina that state? How?


I was the first candidate to call for a comprehensive energy plan.

As I say in the plan, I think we need to make the state a leading consumer of alternative fuels. We need to reform utility rates to encourage conservation,improve public transit, and improve the energy efficiency of state buildings.

If you had to choose (and you don't of course)

would you rather be the third "education governor" or the first "environmental governor"?

How will you improve public transit?

As Treasurer you have been exposed to funding mechanisms. What do you think is best for transit?

discussions of the platforms

I would like to know where each of the candidates stand on the issues that face the state of North Carolina. Healthcare, the elderly, crime, lowering of taxes especially gasoline, Income, and property. Lets stop all the mud slinging and get down to the real issues. Thanks.


I think the idea for General Assembly committee meetings is a good one.

NC School Systems Need Your Help

I live in Wilson County and the School System here is in need of Help! Why is there NO accountability from the State to the Local School Boards? Do you see this as a problem and what would you do to fix it? There is NO checks and balances put in place from the Local Boards to the State, NONE!


Thanks for picking up your question and bringing it over. I couldn't respond to your private email because you had responses blocked.

We're only picking up four blocks of questions from earlier threads that lots of people asked. Everything else is up to individuals (like you) to push the question if you want. Thanks.

3rd question: Military matters

Military matters (two questions)

Two questions:

Do you believe the US Navy has made a compelling case that an Outlying Landing Field should be sited in North Carolina? Under what conditions would you support efforts to locate an OLF in our state?

In the state of Illinois, legislation is being considered regarding military contractors. It sets three important limitations on their function and use:

1. No state funds may be used to contract with or purchase services from private military contractors for training of law enforcement or security Guards.
2. No military weapons or explosives may be used by private military contractors in Illinois except on secured U.S. military bases or regulated facilities.
3. No personnel trained by private military contractors may be used to patrol, guard, control, contain or arrest any Illinois resident.

Would you support and sign this kind of legislation if it were introduced and passed in the North Carolina General Assembly?

Wilson County 2400 students failed EOG's

Last school year there were 2400 students who failed the States EOG. Some of these students made A's and B's all year but had to go to summer school or repeat their grade. Is this a problem with other counties as well and what can you do to fix the testing in this state. FYI, Wilson only has around 11,700 students!

Along with the military question (second)

scharrison asks this question on a previous thread:

What is your position on having a huge mercenary army headquartered in our state?

Do you think it's fair to our tens of thousands of military families, some of whom are on food stamps, that the Federal government pays these mercenaries so much more than active duty soldiers?

Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.


I long opposed the Navy’s first plan to put a landing field in Washington County. I took the position that the landing field should only go in a community where it is wanted. The Navy handled the situation poorly and it is no surprise that folks in Gates and Camden County are now getting organized to oppose the Navy’s renewed efforts. As governor, I’ll work with county leaders, concerned citizens and our congressional delegation to advocate on their behalf to make sure that the OLF doesn’t end up in a North Carolina community where it isn’t wanted.

This will be cut and pasted to other thread

For both

With your stated stance of opposition, will you encourage the Governor to listen to Gates and Camden County today and remove these two sites from consideration by the Navy for this upcoming NEPA study?

You both realize that the old NEPA study is being canceled and a new NEPA process has not started? No federal registry statement supports this new NEPA study.

In 30 months one of you will be the next governor. Please do not make those two counties have to endure 30 months of anguish when you can act today.

Collective Bargaining

Our state employees work incredibly hard, yet they are denied a basic right that all other private employees are afforded; the right to collectively bargain with their employer.

Do you support allowing public employees in North Carolina to collectively bargain with state and local governments?

Question from another thread

Issues of importance to LGBT North Carolinians
Submitted by Pam Spaulding on Mon, 03/31/2008 - 7:32pm.

To both candidates:

* Do you support a state amendment barring gay and lesbian couples from civil marriage or any other legal arrangements that approximate rights granted to opposite-sex couples in a civil marriage?

* Do you support passage of anti-discrimination measures that would protect state workers from being fired on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity?

* Do you believe that health and pension benefits should be extended to same-sex partners of state workers?

Thank you for your consideration.

Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi
Pointing at Naked Emperors

thanks, Linda

I look forward to an answer; when running for re-election, Governor Easley declared in a debate that if a marriage amendment ever hit his desk, he would sign it, so it's relevant question to ask the candidates.

Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend

Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend

Wilson County grading Children on Physical Ability

Some Wilson County Schools are grading children on their Physical Abilities, they receive a letter grade based on the Presidential Physical Fitness Challenge. The problem is that each child is built different, and ex. of the test, if you do not run a mile in 10 minutes you will not receive an A, and it goes down depending on the time. The Local Boards do not see this as discrimination, the State does not see it as discrimination, but Federal does. Do you see this as a problem to our children and what would you say to fix this?

4th topic: Education

A parent wrote in asking about the high cost of attending UNC. What do you say to working people in North Carolina about the dramatic increases in UNC tuition?

And this from a reader:

Do you think the lottery has fulfilled its promise to the citizens of North Carolina? If not, what changes would you support?

Keeping Tuition Low

I agree with our Constitution which says that tuition should be as free as possible. I don't think that we should be paying for education on the backs of students. One part of my economic stimulus package allows parents and grandparents to lock-in tuition rates so they will have a safeguard against future tuition increases. I've also put forward a plan that allows high school graduates to attend community college tuition free.


I was not a supporter of the lottery. It overpromised and undelivered. As far as changes, that's a tough question. I'll tell you one thing I would not support is increased advertising.


If we can't undo it, we can make sure as much of the money as possible goes for the stated purpose.

Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Glad to hear that.

I appreciate your clear response.

Health Insurance/State Workers

I am concerned about health insurance and the rising costs. It seems that the deductibles continue to rise and everytime the state workers get a raise, the insurance goes up. I would like for the cost of insurance to not go up every year, would it be beneficial to the economy for the insurance to increase bi-anually?
I would like to see state workers receive an adequate raise. After working for many years, it is evident that most workers never meet the maximum wage for their salaries. I also notice that wages have a beginning salary, but are not listed with an ending salary. I hope that there would be some kind of timeline set in place for state workers to reach their maximum salary.
Thanks for your time.

Teachers in NC

What can you help to do to bring and keep teachers teaching in NC. Wilson County has one of the highest turnovers and we need your help in keeping teachers. There are classes today March 31 with substitutes teaching because the teachers are droping like flies.


As of April 2006, over 39,000 Guardsmen were serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom (over 150,000 to date), 14,000 in Operation Enduring Freedom (over 50,000 to date), and 652 in Operation Noble Eagle. Since 9-11, over 250,000 Soldiers have been mobilized under USC Title 10 authority (federal orders) and over 350,000 under Title 10 or Title 32 (federal and state orders).
I am currently and have been a member of the North Carolina Army National Guard since 1996. I have personally deployed to Iraq once. I was stationed in Iraq for over 12 months and was on active duty for almost 15 months. With an ongoing battle in Iraq what is going to be your stance about deploying YOUR National Guard soldiers to Iraq? I am aware of the paragraph in my oath "to defend against all enemies both foreign and domestic." However, what concerns do you have regarding the depletion of our resources and its effect on our ability to respond in the event of a natural disaster such as another Hurricane Floyd?

Thank You.

Thank you for your service.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Seven Point Grading Scale

I am a high school student in North Carolina. NC currently has a state policy that schools must use a seven point grading scale. This means that a 92 is a B, 84 a C, and 76 a D. Most other state have a 10 point grading scale. Under this system each of those grades would a letter higher. This means North Carolina students are not as competitive nation wide as students from other state. Would you change this policy?

Duke's proposed coal plant

Sir, welcome and thanks. How do you feel about the new plant that Duke is proposing and do you think nuclear power is an acceptable way to produce electricity in the future?

Thank you.

I've really appreciated this opportunity. Thanks to BlueNC for all you do, and thanks to everyone who tuned in this evening.

Thank you, Richard Moore

We enjoyed it and hope you'll think about attending the blogger barbeque bash on April 27. I'll be sending you an invitation.

Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Thanks for participating

We appreciate you coming here in person, so to speak.

Wow, that was a fast hour.

Treasure Moore, you're welcome to stick around for as long as you like. We'll be here all night.

Thank you again for your willingness to join us. You have a lot of supporters here and you are a good guy for trying out this messy experiment in democracy.

It was a fast hour.

Mr. Moore, I can certainly understand if you can't stay tonight, but would you be willing to answer the questions you were unable to get to and send those answers to James for publication here?

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi
Pointing at Naked Emperors

We're also very happy for campaign staff to jump in

We know you're very busy, but we'll take what we can get.

It's pretty quiet between 2am and 6am

Once the paper's in the driveway the pace picks up.

Non Profits

Non profit organizations across our state receive enormous amounts of state funds with little surpervision of the use or abuse of these funds and the treatment of their employees. What changes would you make to insure that these agencies are "in compliance" for more issues than just the grant requirements ie. sufficient and proper services to their clients, proper treatment of employees, a state wide policy to provide anonymous protection for employees who report abuse and/or hostile workplace environments and who report misuse of state funding to the state funding agencies, and a contact person at the state level where the employees can report any type of abuse with anonymity for any type of abuse? Presently the employees are subject to little or no assistance at the state level and certainly no protection in reporting these abuses and these very agencies are operating "at will" with huge amounts of our state tax monies.

Not much to it

I can honestly say I got very little if anything from this. I only saw about 3 or 4 answers from the candidates and no followup.

How are they going to pay for free community college tuition? How is Bev Purdue going to fund UNCCH and other state schools free or reduced tuition?

No answers.

Stick around.

Imagine you're standing in a room with a hundred people throwing questions at you and you have to answer by typing.

This is the start of a long conversation.

By the way, this is the second visit from Bev Perdue, and Richard Moore is certainly welcome to come back too.


PS If you only saw three or four answers, you weren't looking very closely.

Work in progress

Welcome to BlueNC. The questions sit out here. They can come back and answer and you can keep calling them out if they don't.

See these guys up above me are so nice.

But, personally, your questions sound like neocon bait and since you've been a member for less than 5 hours, I wouldn't respond. Oh, those Democrats are going to raise our taxes!!!!

I wouldn't answer your questions either, not because they aren't good, but because all you seem to be concerned with is that TAXES ARE GOING TO BE RAISED!!!!!

Maybe I'm reading you wrong, I do think it is legitimate to ask how things will be funded, but this:

My question is how to you propose to pay for these programs? North Carolina is already taxed higher that all of our neighboring states. When will we see a meaningful tax CUT?

This makes me think you support lower taxes and less services. When will folks like you get it through your head, we tried that experiment twice, it was called the "Reagan Years" and the "George W. Bush Years". It doesn't work.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Dear Sir.

My father is a Republican, a fact which I remind him of, to his chagrin, every time we talk about politics. I don't bash all Republicans, just those who find any common ground with the no-tax and spend wing of the Republican Party, which includes the entire Bush administration.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Last comment, and will probably be deleted.

Higher tax rates will pay for more programs, there is no question about that. But let me ask you a question. How do people, and more importantly businesses, businesses that hire people, look at tax rate structure? If our tax rates are 1/2 to 1 1/2 % higher than our neighbors, where will they choose to invest in their homes and factories? That is but one of many criteria for choosing a location, but I think it is an important one.

Good night.

SC #1 - not

I don't see South Carolina on any Forbes lists. You think everyone coming down I95 to NC just got lost on the way to South of the Border?

It must be GA or TN or KY or VA?

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.


Thanks. I had an actual Republican in my house last week and we had a really good conversation. He was a nice guy, as you seem to be.


I hope you'll find time to jump in to our discussions. I've invited Republican gubernatorial candidates to come by for a visit, but they've said, "Maybe after the primary." I can understand that.

Nice to meet you.

thanks for stopping by

I hope at least some of your questions got answered, and I hope you will stick around in the future to ask other candidates any questions you might have.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Amen to THAT!

See, the GOPers are a little more worried about Richard Moore than they are Perdue because of his fiscal conservatism. They figure he'll cull more of *their* types than she will, which is probably true.

But I'm thinking, as you've just observed, that people have had time to notice that the "trickle down" concept supported by the tax cut nuts have not benefited North Carolinians.

Hey Ole Yeller, you get that rabies shot yet?

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

Are we taxed higher than all our neighboring states?

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

watching closely

He said Hello, goodbye, and answered 7 questions. In an hour, that not a lot.

And that was the last we saw of ole yeller

- his tail disappeared out the doggie door and that was that.

He's not a well dog, you know.

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

Stats for tonight?

If someone could post the stats on unique visitors and hits during the debate, I'd like to add it to my news story for tomorrow.




The person who would be able to do that is Betsy who really deserves a profile at the Dome more than anyone here.

I can take a hint

She was the one at the beach Friday, not me.

I'll get to it when I return to work Wednesday...



Does that mean you have the day off tomorrow?

::scheming to take over the Dome while Ryan's away::

I guess

If by "day off" you mean "working on the house" instead of covering campaign events, the answer is yes.


I feel your pain

You were working your tail off this weekend. I was mowing at 6pm on Friday and engaged in other chores until Saturday evening just to get this money shot:

Like I was having fun.....

I was with a bunch of teenagers. :D

Have fun working on your house.

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

Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Yep, Had the rabiesl.

What I want to know, is when has North Carolina had a tax cut????? There has been nothing to trickle down.

Comment deleted

If you want to rant about taxes, take it to another thread. Or better yet, take it somewhere else besides BlueNC. Please.

you sir

should sit down and read a newspaper.

Many people here have been bothered by the tax cut that the NC Senate gave to the top income bracket in NC. But I guess that tax cut was just made up by the media since you know all and see all.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Well, he did say "meaningful"

Which meant that no matter what one answered, he could bark back that it wasn't "meaningful."

(He's not a well dog, and I don't think he answers to "sir.")

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

tax cut

You sir should read up on the tax laws. I posted in the other thread (Mr Moore's thread) that the tax cut you refer to was exactly 1/4 of 1% on people earning over $200,000 a year. To be in the top 10% of earners nationwide, your household income need only be $104,000.

This terrible tax cut saved someone with taxable income of $250,000 a whopping $125. And yes that is a fact. I pulled the rates from 2004 and 2007 and made the calculations.

Tax reform

The secret is tax reform. You can't cut taxes on a shrinking base. We need a broader base that includes transfer tax and services so we can reduce the rates.

I will, I have. Bye bye.


Come on back, Ole Yeller

Do come back and participate.

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

Dallas? that you? It don't trickle down bud. By the time it gets anywhere it's a fine mist.

Comment deleted

Last warning.

If you want to rant on another thread, feel free. But not here. This is Treasurer Moore's debate thread, not your soapbox to complain about whatever crosses your mind.

So, tax cuts are the right choice?

I'll tell you what, when you get the fed to raise taxes back where they were in January 2001, when we had a surplus, then we could cut taxes here in NC. But, as it is, the fed keeps lowering the amount they give NC (like for roads) so we have to keep getting it from our citizens.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

tax cut

That was for people making over $200,000 a year and it wasn't much of a cut. By the way, this whopping tax cut of 1/4 of 1% that you are talking about. It saves someone with taxable income of $250,000...........drum roll please........... a whopping $125. That isn't that a meaning way to jump start the economy? Sounds good when the politicians say I gave you a tax cut doesn't it?


By the way, to be included in the top 10% of household incomes, you income need only be $104,000.

Investment in infrastructure

Who said tax cuts jump start the economy? That's a Republican fairy tale. Investment in infrastructure will do the trick.

PS I just got my letter telling me I'm going to get another letter telling me what the "tax rebate" is going to be. What a waste of taxpayer money those mailings are.


I couldn't believe Presnit Boosh decided that sending us a letter to tell us that HE Decidered to send us some of the new money he printed up for the Bear Stearns fiasco, would be coming our way.

So monitarily responsible, those Republics. It only cost $42 million to send out the letters.

North Carolina. Turning the South Blue!

North Carolina. Turning the South Blue!

to tell us he was sending us some of ...wait for it ....

...our own money!

Awfully nice of him, I must say. Why, that $600 per family will surely help everyone who is about to love their home, or is so swamped with medical bills they can't see the light at the end of the tunnel. {snort} Tax Rebates. Just another way of the government asking you: "Was it good for you?"

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi
Pointing at Naked Emperors