Politics

Political news from around NC and beyond.

What is the typical gubernatorial profile in North Carolina? Are there patterns in the background, upbringing or political composition of those who have occupied the Governor's Mansion during the last 50 years? And what might these patterns tell us about who could be chief executive going forward?


Grant Baldwin / Flickr / CC

North Carolina awarded its 15 electoral votes to President Donald Trump on Monday, following the will of the people in a state where the Republican won a narrow victory.

With hospitalizations and new cases of COVID infections surging, a curfew takes effect on Friday night. Meanwhile the Attorney General joined a lawsuit against Facebook.

Becki Gray and Rob Schofield review those topics, and discuss what — if anything — to do with the more than $1 trillion in college loan debt.
 


North Carolina legislative building
Dave DeWitt / WUNC

North Carolina Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and Republican legislative leaders said on Thursday they've found a solution to address the potential loss of $30 million in federal coronavirus relief funds that lawmakers earmarked for rural broadband projects.

Two think tanks — both nurtured and sustained financially over the years by the family of longtime conservative political donor Art Pope — are merging.

The John Locke Foundation and Civitas Institute announced on Thursday that they'll unite under the Locke Foundation name starting Jan. 1. The John Locke Foundation began in 1990, while Civitas started in 2005.

Congressman-Elect Madison Cawthorn is set to steal the seat last held by former Representative Mark Meadows. Cawthorn, a Republican, will become the youngest member of the U.S. House of Representatives by six years. On this episode of The Politics Podcast, Cawthorn discusses plans for Capitol Hill, and allegations of anti-semitism. 
 


Congresswoman Virginia Foxx and Congressman Ted Budd both tested positive recently for COVID-19.
Campaign Photos

Two Republican members of North Carolina's congressional delegation have returned to work in Washington after both tested positive recently for COVID-19.

Republican Congressman Mark Walker announced this week that he will vie for an open North Carolina Senate seat. Meanwhile this week in state politics, a federal appellate court ruled in favor of a photo voter ID requirement. And, the closest statewide race in North Carolina history isn't over quite yet.

Aisha Dew and Clark Riemer speak with Jeff Tiberii about some of this week's developments.


Nam Y. Huh / AP Photo

Hand recounts of a small portion of ballots cast statewide in the extremely close race for North Carolina Supreme Court chief justice will begin next week in the counties, the State Board of Elections announced on Thursday.

Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Senior Associate Justice Paul Martin Newby
Courtesy North Carolina Judicial Branch

Republican Paul Newby's narrow lead over Democratic incumbent Cheri Beasley changed little overall as a statewide machine recount of North Carolina's very close race for Supreme Court chief justice was finally completed late Wednesday.

Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP Photo

Outgoing North Carolina Rep. Mark Walker announced on Tuesday his bid to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Richard Burr in 2022, a path the Republican indicated a year ago he'd pursue after his House district shifted to the left during an unscheduled redistricting.

In the beginning of the new year, the 117th Congress will be sworn in and North Carolina will welcome three new representatives to its delegation. Congresswoman-elect Kathy Manning will be among them, representing the state’s 6th District that encompasses most of the Triad. She'll be the first woman to represent that district and North Carolina's first Jewish congresswoman.

In this episode, host Jeff Tiberii talks with Manning about her priorities as a representative, campaigning during a pandemic, and why a medical bill sparked her career in politics.


State Senate chamber
Dave DeWitt / WUNC

Democrats in North Carolina's State Senate have returned four lawmakers to leadership positions for the upcoming session after the GOP defended its majorities in both chambers of the legislature.

Jim Morrill started covering politics during the Reagan administration. After reporting on dozens of elections, 11 national conventions and countless elected officials, the longtime Charlotte Observer journalist is retiring.

Host Jeff Tiberii asks Morrill to reflect on his five-decade career and the state of journalism. And later, Jeff does some reflecting of his own, about his father-in-law, who died this week.


Voting signs were posted outside of White Rock Baptist Church in Durham on Election Day, Nov. 3, 2020.
Peyton Sickles / for WUNC

The North Carolina State Board of Elections certified the results of the November general election on Tuesday, awarding the state's 15 electoral votes to President Donald Trump.

Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Senior Associate Justice Paul Martin Newby
Courtesy North Carolina Judicial Branch

Like it or not, Cheri Beasley's tenure as Chief Justice will be defined in large part by her response to COVID-19.

Election Day month rolls on with a recount in the North Carolina Chief Justice Supreme Court contest. A crowded field of candidates is forming for a vacant U.S. Senate seat. In our latest review of North Carolina politics, Aisha Dew and Becki Gray discuss those races, the likelihood Republicans will decriminalize marijuana, and what they're appreciative for this November.


A white man, Donald Trump, standing in front of a wooden podium. The podium has a blue sign with a red border with the words 'Trump Pence' in bold, white text. Trump is wearing a dark colored suit and a red tie with a white shirt
Gage Skidmore

The election is over, but many big questions remain for the political future of our nation. Which political party will control the U.S. Senate? Will the Democratic Party move more to the left or more to the center under a Biden administration?

An image of former state senator Josh Stein
Courtesy of Josh Stein

Democratic Attorney General Josh Stein won a second four-year term after the canvassed totals showed him leading by more than 13,600 votes over Republican Jim O’Neill. The margin was outside the threshold for O’Neill to request a recount. The Associated Press called the race for Stein late Tuesday after the canvass was complete.

In the last 40 years, North Carolina has voted for a president and governor from separate parties in seven out of 11 elections. Each time the state has split the vote, North Carolinians have elected a Republican president and a Democratic governor. The 2020 election produced the same result, as thousands of people voted for President Donald Trump and Governor Roy Cooper.

On this episode of The Politics Podcast, host Jeff Tiberii talks with Peter Francia, political science professor and director of the ECU Center for Survey Research, about the reasons why voters might split their ticket, and the history of the phenomenon in North Carolina. Jeff also talks with one split-ticket voter about their choice to cast a ballot for Trump and Cooper.


Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Senior Associate Justice Paul Martin Newby
Courtesy North Carolina Judicial Branch

Updated at 2:30 p.m.

Elections officials will recount votes in the race for North Carolina's Supreme Court chief justice. The statewide recount will begin later this week and must be completed by next Wednesday.

Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Senior Associate Justice Paul Martin Newby
Courtesy North Carolina Judicial Branch

Candidates in North Carolina's still-undecided races for Supreme Court chief justice and attorney general on Monday awaited final official results from several counties, two of which had to adjust previous tallies due to administrative errors.

County elections boards have finalized their official vote tallies. Still, on Friday the race to be chief justice of the state Supreme Court looked almost certainly headed for a recount.  

Meanwhile, the Democratic challenger in the U.S. Senate race conceded this week. And a former Wake County Public Schools superintendent moved into a top (interim) role at the Pentagon. 

Host Jeff Tiberii, Rob Schofield of NC Policy Watch and Becki Gray of the John Locke Foundation review those stories along with the latest grim pandemic news.


An animated picture showing a red and blue wolves circling a white lamb with DEMOCRACY in large letters above
john8322.blogspot.com

If there is one thing a majority of Americans can agree on, it is that we do not have much trust in our federal government. Congress currently boasts an 19% approval rating and presidential approval has dropped steadily for decades, according to Gallup. Despite these trends, citizens continue rallying around elections with the dream that this time will be different. But did you ever vote for the electoral system itself?

Workers at the Durham County Board of Elections process absentee ballot requests while maintaining safety during the coronavirus pandemic in Durham, N.C. on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020.
File, Ben McKeown / For WUNC

Counties across the state are finishing up the ballot count today and will hold canvas meetings to tally final results from the 2020 General Election.

Voters walk past campaign signs at the Graham Civic Center polling location in Graham, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020.
Gerry Broome / AP Photo

North Carolina Republicans are frustrated that national media outlets haven't called the state for President Donald Trump yet in last week's election.

Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., celebrates with his wife Susan, at a election night rally Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020, in Mooresville, N.C.
Chris Carlson / AP

North Carolina Republican Thom Tillis has won reelection to his U.S. Senate seat, confirming that Democrats must now win both runoff races in Georgia in January if they are to seize Senate control from the GOP.

Your Election Day Vote May Not Be Showing Up Yet Online. That's Normal In NC

Nov 11, 2020
Workers at the Durham County Board of Elections process absentee ballot requests while maintaining safety during the coronavirus pandemic in Durham, N.C. on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020.
Ben McKeown / For WUNC

On Election Day, North Carolina voters insert ballots into the scanners that count votes in every precinct. Voters know their votes are counted when they see their ballot disappear into the machine, and the voter tally goes up by one. 

But this year, elections administrators, legislators and news organizations around the state have received calls from concerned and often confused voters who want to make sure their votes counted.

Governor Cooper looks off-camera
NC Dept. of Public Safety

Down-ballot Democrats struggled in North Carolina’s 2020 elections. While Gov. Roy Cooper garnered a hefty lead over his challenger, Republicans furthered their control over the council of state and general assembly. While there is expected friction between Cooper and the GOP legislature over the usual issues like Medicaid expansion and public school funding, the party lines are drawn differently in the council of state.

President Trump, a white man with light orange and white hair, standing in front of a podium with a microphone. He is wearing a white shirt with a red tie and a dark suit jacket. His mouth is open
Michael Vadon

Three major broadcast news networks cut away from President Donald Trump’s press conference last week because of his on-air lies about election fraud. CBS, ABC and NBC cut away from his live stream to fact check the claims. Fox and CNN carried the entire press conference but reported afterward that the president had no evidence to back up his accusations about the election.

Pages