Like many of you, I received this email solicitation from Martin Nesbitt today. Though I have written to him several times, this is indeed the first communication I've ever received from the man, who happens to be the majority leader in the North Carolina Senate, representing Buncombe County.
Don't get me wrong, there's nothing unusual about such hit-and-run solicitations. I get at least one a day from someone somewhere in search of contributions. But Mr. Nesbitt isn't just "someone somewhere." He's right here in North Carolina, and he's one of the top dogs of the North Carolina State Senate. And as far as I know, he's not once bothered to check in with this community, make a post or a comment, or even acknowledge that there are progressive Democrats in North Carolina. If my nose seems out of joint, it is. Mr. Nesbitt seems to think we all just fell off the turnip truck, including one sentence in his appeal that seems just short of laughable:
Senate Democrats pledge to continue standing up to special interests.
That said, he's surely right about us being six months away from a pivotal election. Which leaves me in a quandary about how to respond. Would you help in thinking this through? Please provide your guidance and thoughts in the comments. I'll plan to send his office a link to the post, with an invitation for him or his staff members to join in the conversation.
For those who want to contribute, here's the Act Blue link. If you do make a contribution, please consider adding 10 cents to your total to let Mr. Nesbitt know that you are part of the BlueNC community.
Here's his fundraising email/letter:
We are less than six months away from a pivotal election. The fate of North Carolina's future depends on state legislative races across North Carolina. All 50 state senate seats are up for grabs this year. A swing of just six seats would put the Republicans in control. The election is especially critical because the Party that is in power after these elections will be in control of redistricting at both the state and federal level. If Republicans are successful in 2010, they could quickly erase the gains and progress made by Democrats in recent years while setting themselves up for a decade of control.
We can't let that happen. Can you contribute $5, $10, $25 or $50 dollars to help ensure Democrats protect their majority in 2010?
It is important to know what is at stake this election. Democrats' priorities have been consistent and clear. We have worked to improve public education, create jobs and protect the environment. Senate Democrats pledge to continue standing up to special interests. We go to work each day trying to find new and innovative ways to put average North Carolinians back to work. That's why we passed tax cuts for small businesses and increased funding for job training programs at local community colleges.
The Republicans simply have different priorities. They voted against tax credits for small businesses. They voted against funding our community colleges. The GOP even suggested the state should fire teachers. Just a few weeks ago Senate Minority Leader Phil Berger crowed "Protecting teachers is not the same as protecting education."
Berger's take proves he just doesn't get it. Firing teachers would force schools to increase class sizes and cram students into classrooms like sardines. These are not the priorities that have made North Carolina great. We must work to ensure Democrats retain control so that North Carolina continues to move forward.
With your help, I am confident we will once again put together a winning campaign effort. I thank you for your continued support of the North Carolina Senate Democratic Caucus.
Senator Martin Nesbitt