Perdue news stirs up a storm

Everything you ever wanted to read about the Big News from yesterday, all below the fold.

ASSOCIATED PRESS: NC Gov Perdue's statement she won't run again -- The prepared statement of North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue, who announced Thursday she won't seek re-election in 2012: "Like the rest of the nation, North Carolina has been facing difficult economic times - demanding many difficult decisions. I have had to make painful budget cuts in important areas of government. But I believe I have approached this challenge in a way that is consistent with my values and the values that have made our state a wonderful place to live and raise a family. I have spent my tenure in office - and, in fact, my adult lifetime - fighting for things that I care deeply about. And as anyone who knows me will tell you, I do not back down from tough fights. But I understand this: We live in highly partisan times, where some people seem more worried about scoring political points than working together to address the real challenges our state faces. And it is clear to me that my race for re-election will only further politicize the fight to adequately fund our schools. A re-election campaign in this already divisive environment will make it more difficult to find any bipartisan solutions. The thing I care about most right now is making sure that our schools and schoolchildren do not continue to be the victims of shortsighted legislative actions and severe budget cuts inflicted by a legislative majority with the wrong priorities. Therefore, I am announcing today that I have decided not to seek re-election. I hope this decision will open the door to an honest and bipartisan effort to help our schools. To those of you who have supported me throughout my years of public service, I will always be grateful for the confidence you have placed in me. In my remaining months in office, I look forward to continuing to fight for the priorities we share, by putting North Carolinians back to work and investing in our children's future. To my children and grandchildren, and especially to my husband Bob, thank you for always being there for me - especially as I've weighed this difficult decision. Thank you all, and God bless North Carolina."
ASSOCIATED PRESS: Dem NC governor faced tough re-election fight -- Gov. Beverly Perdue said Thursday she will not seek re-election because she fears a fight with Republicans over public education would become too political. But she entered the election year with some baggage: a campaign finance investigation, sagging poll numbers and worries from fellow Democrats she would drag them down in a key battleground state for President Barack Obama. Perdue, the state's first woman governor, rode into office partly on the coattails of Obama's surprise 2008 victory in North Carolina. Her departure created a wide-open gubernatorial primary in a state that is so key to Obama, Democrats are hosting their national convention in Charlotte in September.
NEW YORK TIMES: North Carolina Governor's Decision May Aid Obama Bid -- Bev Perdue, a Democrat who barely grabbed the governorship of North Carolina three years ago and never gained widespread popularity, said on Thursday that she would not run for re-election this fall.  The abrupt announcement, which one staff member said took the office by surprise, comes as the Democrats prepare for their presidential nominating convention in Charlotte in September. For political analysts, the timing suggests an effort to shore up President Obama’s bid for re-election by allowing him to distance himself from an unpopular governor in a state that was central to his election in 2008. “Certainly, one has to think the Democratic Party has welcomed the news,” said John Dinan, a professor of political science at Wake Forest University. “How much of a drag she was going to be is debatable, but she wasn’t going to help.” In a strongly worded statement, Ms. Perdue, 65, cited corrosive politics as a reason she was not seeking to keep her office.
WRAL-TV: Perdue will not seek re-election -- Facing a tough fight for a second term, Gov. Beverly Perdue said Thursday that she will not seek re-election so she can focus her energy on fighting for a sales tax increase to fund education. "The thing I care about most right now is making sure that our schools and schoolchildren do not continue to be the victims of shortsighted legislative actions and severe budget cuts inflicted by a legislative majority with the wrong priorities," Perdue said in a statement.
WRAL-TV: Dust settles, hats fly -- In case you've spent the day out of pocket, Gov. Bev Perdue announced today she won't run for re-election.  That news came as a shock to pretty much everyone, including her major fundraisers, the executive director of her party, and, I'm told, even her campaign consultants.  Her communications offices, both campaign and gubernatorial, appeared to be largely paralyzed. The pundits, however, were not. 
REUTERS: North Carolina governor will not seek second term -- North Carolina's Democratic Governor Bev Perdue announced she would not seek a second term on Thursday, giving in to falling poll numbers and a political image weakened by ethics questions and a revitalized Republican opposition. Perdue, 65, a former school teacher with a doctorate in education administration, became the state's first female governor when she was elected in 2008, the same year Barack Obama wrested the traditionally red state from Republicans in the presidential election. But her political fortunes quickly declined when her 2008 campaign became the focus of ongoing state and federal criminal investigations stemming from allegations of failing to report dozens of flights donated to the campaign.
LOS ANGELES TIMES: North Carolina governor decides against reelection bid -- In a surprise move, North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue announced Thursday afternoon that she will not seek a second term this November. The Democrat said in a statement that she decided against a reelection bid so she could avoid further politicizing her fight with the state's Republican Legislature over school funding. "A reelection campaign in this already divisive environment will make it more difficult to find any bipartisan solutions," she said.
WALL STREET JOURNAL: North Carolina's Governor Won't Run -- North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue said Thursday she wouldn't seek re-election, an unexpected development that could complicate Democrats' efforts to hold on to the governor's mansion and President Barack Obama's chances of carrying the swing state in November. Ms. Perdue, 65 years old, has one of the lowest approval ratings of any governor in the U.S., at 32%, according to Public Policy Polling, a firm in Raleigh.  A poll showed the Democrat trailing her presumed Republican opponent, former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, by about 11 points in a hypothetical matchup. Ms. Perdue narrowly beat Mr. McCrory in 2008.
GOVERNOR’S JOURNAL: Perdue Won't Run -- North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue(D) will not run for re-election. The decision leaked out of her office Thursday morning and by early afternoon she issued a statement saying she believes her re-election campaign would further polarize North Carolina state politics. Perdue would have faced a difficult campaign against the likely Republican nominee, former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (R). Chronic low approval ratings and a fundraising disadvantage have made it clear – for several months – that her chance for success was low. Her exit from the race will likely set off a scramble on the Democratic side to replace her. Depending on who emerges as the Democratic nominee it might hurt, or help McCrory. He is expected to make a formal announcement next week.
WUNC-FM: Perdue Not Seeking Second Term -- North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue announced today that she will not seek a second term this year. The Democratic Governor was the first woman elected to the position and all indications were that she planned to seek re-election.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: Reaction to NC Gov. Perdue's plan not to run -- A collection of quotes reacting to North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue's decision not to seek re-election in 2012. Some quotes were abbreviated for space and edited for AP style: “For over 25 years, she has fought for the people of the Tar Heel State - working to transform the state's public schools, improve the health care system, protect and attract jobs for members of the military and their families, and create the jobs of the future. Michelle and I want to congratulate Gov. Perdue on her historic tenure” – President Barack Obama.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: NC governor gets words of praise from Obama -- President Obama is praising North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue after her announcement that she won't seek re-election in 2012, calling her a barrier breaker during more than 25 years in elected office.
GASTON GAZETTE: Gaston Democrats react to Gov. Perdue's decision -- Local Gaston Democrats laud Gov. Bev Perdue’s efforts to stay true to a Democratic platform in the face of such opposition. “The governor definitely stood up for ordinary citizens in her term,” said Gaston County Democratic Chairman Robert Kellogg, who cheered on Perdue’s budgetary battles with the steadfast General Assembly, equally struggling with a 16 percent approval rating. “One thing is certain: she stood up for education and worked hard, and that meant vetoing a lot of harmful legislation. She’s been a strong Democrat.”
DURHAM HERALD-SUN: Local leaders stunned by Perdue decision -- The shocking news that Gov. Beverly Perdue will not seek re-election has fueled a firestorm of speculation about who the Democrats might nominate to replace the one-term governor. Across the state, political pundits have begun to assemble a speculative list of possible replacements that include former UNC system President Erskine Bowles; U.S. Congressman Brad Miller, who announced Thursday that he would not seek re-election to avoid a 4th District fight with incumbent David Price; Dan Blue, a democratic state senator from Wake County; and Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx, who said he is considering a run for governor.
SHELBY STAR: Bev bows out - Perdue won't seek 2nd term as governor -- Democrats and Republicans see their gubernatorial glass as half-full after Gov. Bev Perdue announced she wouldn’t seek re-election this year. Republican leaders say the surprise Thursday announcement will bolster former Charlotte mayor Pat McCrory’s chances in November, but some analysts say Perdue, who was trailing McCrory in the polls, made a political sacrifice for fellow Democrats. “I think she’s hoping and the national Democratic Party is hoping that their fortunes will improve by her not being on the ticket,” said Dr. Ben Gaskins, assistant professor of political science at Gardner-Webb University. “The polls that I’ve seen show her losing pretty handily if Pat McCrory ran against her.”
WWAY-TV: Former Gov. Hunt: Perdue's 'done a lot of good work' -- Jim Hunt knows a little something about politics in North Carolina. His 16 years in office are the most of any Tar Heel governor. It's why many politicians in the state, including Gov. Bev Perdue, look at him as a mentor. On the day Perdue announced she would not seek a second term as governor, Gov. Hunt was in Wilmington for a conference. We spoke one-on-one with him today about his protege's big decision. Q: What do you think of her decision? A: "That's a decision she had to make. That's a personal decision. She's done a lot of good work, especially for education in this state. I think we should be grateful to her for all that she's done. I certainly am.
NEWS14-TV: Gov. Perdue's legacy ends as education advocate, amidst campaign controversy – Gov. Bev Perdue's decision to be a one-term governor means her long tenure in elected office is coming to an end. Perdue started her political career serving in the legislature in the 1980's, then in 2000 was elected as Lt. Governor, moving on to governor from there when she won the General Election in 2008 by three percentage points. Gov. Perdue's top priority has been education. With Republicans recently taking control of the state Legislature, Gov. Perdue has been extremely vocal about funding issues for North Carolina schools.  "I'm sure she hopes that's what her legacy will be is that when the Republicans took over the legislature and tried to cut teachers tried to cut education funding, she said she wasn't going to stand for it," said Director of Public Policy Polling Tom Jensen.
THE HILL: Obama fiscal chairman would be strong N.C. candidate, poll finds -- With the announcement Thursday by North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue that she won't seek reelection in November, the door could be open for Obama fiscal commission Co-Chairman Erskine Bowles to run. According to an analysis out Thursday from Public Policy Polling, Bowles is the strongest Democratic candidate against former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (R). Bowles served as chief of staff to President Clinton and twice ran for Senate before becoming, until 2010, the head of the North Carolina University system.
CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: McCrory to step up campaign -- Could two Charlotte mayors face off for N.C. governor? That possibility emerged Thursday when Democrat Anthony Foxx said he's considering a race that suddenly opened up with Gov. Bev Perdue's decision not to seek re-election. Foxx's predecessor, Republican Pat McCrory, plans to launch his own long-anticipated campaign Tuesday, but in a landscape dramatically different from the one he expected. "He's got a completely different race today than he had last night," said Republican strategist Carter Wrenn. "The world just changed."
NEWS14-TV: Democrats consider who will run for governor -- With Gov. Bev. Perdue not running for a second term, who will Democrats rally around to hang on to the Governor's Mansion in 2012? Democratic leaders said there are a lot of qualified candidates.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: With Perdue out, Dalton to run for governor -- North Carolina Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton is all in for succeeding fellow Democrat and Gov. Beverly Perdue.
CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL: Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx weighs his options -- Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx said Thursday afternoon he is weighing his options following N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue's decision not to seek re-election. Foxx issued a short statement about four hours after Perdue announced she would not seek a second term. “Governor Beverly Perdue deserves our gratitude for guiding our state in very difficult times, and for being a good friend to the City of Charlotte,” Foxx said in his statement. “Her decision not to run for re-election came as a surprise to me. I remain focused on Charlotte and the substantial work ahead. I will spend the coming weeks talking with my family and friends about how I could best serve our city and state, and I ask the public and media for some patience as I work through those conversations.”
ASSOCIATED PRESS: Ex-state treasurer Moore looking at NC gov's bid -- The Democrat who lost to Beverly Perdue in the 2008 primary for North Carolina governor says he's considering whether to run this year now that Perdue has announced she won't seek re-election.
ROLL CALL: N.C. Democratic Bench Keeps Shuffling -- Will the last endangered Democratic official in North Carolina please turn out the lights? Rep. Brad Miller (D) announced his retirement this morning. Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue, facing the likely prospect of an epic defeat this November, announced her decision not to run for a second term this afternoon. Later, politically vulnerable Rep. Mike McIntyre (D) opened the door to running for governor of the Tar Heel State. And a local news report tonight said Rep. Heath Shuler (D) is eyeing a bid for governor as well. A Shuler spokeswoman had no comment.
WLOS-TV: Shuler Considers Run For Governor -- A source close to North Carolina 11th District U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler tells News 13 that he is strongly considering and leaning towards running for governor. The source tells News 13`s Russ Bowen that an announcement could happen in a matter of days.  The news comes just hours after Gov. Bev Perdue announced she would not seek a second term in 2012.
WILMINGTON STAR-NEWS: U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre pondering run for governor -- U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre, D-N.C., said in a statement this afternoon that he is always “open to considering broader opportunities to serve, including the possibility of Governor.” Here is his full statement: Governor Beverly Perdue has been a dedicated and determined North Carolina public servant. She has always done her best to put North Carolina first, she has been a true champion for our state’s educational system and a fighter for ensuring that our kids get a world-class education. Dee and I wish her and her family the best! My heart and passion are in public service and going to work each and every day to build consensus and move North Carolina forward. “The ideals and issues that make our state and nation great do not belong to either political party. I love North Carolina; I love serving its people; and I am always open to considering broader opportunities to serve, including the possibility of Governor.”
WILMINGTON STAR-NEWS: McIntyre, other Democrats consider running for governor -- Possible Democratic contenders quickly began lining up Thursday after news that Gov. Beverly Perdue won't seek re-election. Among them is 7th District U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre. who released a statement saying he's open to the idea of running for governor. It said, "The ideals and issues that make our state and nation great do not belong to either political party. I love North Carolina; I love serving its people; and I am always open to considering broader opportunities to serve, including the possibility of governor."
HICKORY RECORD: Troubles over campaign finances dogged Perdue -- A shroud of wrongdoing has surrounded Gov. Beverly Perdue for a while. Specifically, the state Board of Elections investigated the issue of campaign flights that went unreported on campaign finance reports. While the State Board of Elections fined The Bev Perdue Committee $30,000 for failing to report numerous flights, Perdue has not been charged or indicted for anything related to the issue. And Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby Jr. has said Perdue won’t face any charges. However, others connected to her campaign and office have been charged.
WTVD-TV: Perdue faced plenty of adversity -- Since she took office in 2009, Governor Beverly Perdue has faced a steady stream of hurdles - from poor poll numbers to a campaign investigation and a Republican controlled General Assembly. From the first day she took office, Perdue has struggled with a state economy hit hard by the recession and an unemployment rate persistently above the national average. Polling conducted throughout her term has consistently shown her approval ratings hovering around 40 percent.
DUKE NEWS SERVICE: Duke Professors on Gov. Perdue's Surprise Departure -- Gov. Beverly Perdue's surprise announcement Thursday that she would not run for re-election this year has the state capital buzzing with speculation, with Duke political scientists saying the decision has "tremendous national implications." "North Carolina is central to the Obama campaign's re-election strategy," said Kerry Haynie, professor of political science.  "Having an incumbent governor of his party seeking re-election would ordinarily be an advantage to the president, but Gov. Perdue has been weakened by campaign finance scandals and might have been a drag on Obama. "My guess is that Perdue came to this decision with the urging of some national Democratic Party insiders." Michael Munger, a professor of political science who ran for governor on the Libertarian ticket against Perdue, offered several scenarios. "One is that this is engineered to make way for Dan Blue, the African-American state senator from Wake County," Munger said. "Perdue waited until now to make it harder for anyone else to enter the race. The fact that the primary is on the same day as the constitutional amendment on gay marriage assures a large black turnout. This could be the difference to get Dan Blue the nomination. "The second possibility  is that it is interesting that Brad Miller pulled out of the [US House of Representatives] District 4 fight with David Price yesterday. Could that timing mean something? "The third possibility, and the most likely, is this: just typical chaos and confusion in politics, and no one should read too much into the timing. Perdue was just too much of a liability in an important swing state."
WTVD-TV: Perdue's decision could impact national election -- Experts say Thursday's announcement that Gov. Bev Perdue will not seek re-election only adds fuel to the already fierce contest in the presidential election. North Carolina has been labeled a "critical battleground state" in the race for the White House. The new political instability in North Carolina has the attention of the presidential candidates lusting for its support, according to Duke University Political Science Professor Kerry Haynie.


Memo to Democratic Candidates for Governor

I will be basing my vote on the candidate who most effectively takes down Pat McCrory and who has the most progressive coattails in changing the legislature.

If all the Democratic candidates do is attack each others' records or worse engage in cutthroat attack ads, I might leave that line blank in the fall.

50 states, 210 media market, 435 Congressional Districts, 3080 counties, 192,480 precincts