North Carolina -- home to former Sen.. John Edwards and future Sen. Paula Broadwell?
Not a chance that'll happen now that Charlotte-based Broadwell has been outed as David Petraeus' mistress and co-star of the most-talked-about extramarital romance since, well, John Edwards and Charlotte-based Rielle Hunter.
But Time magazine reports that Broadwell had a plan to run for the Senate, as a Republican from the Tar Heel State.
Over drinks in Aspen, Colo., last July, she told a small group that she had been approached by some "Republican moneymen," as Time put it, about running -- presumably against Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, who is up for re-election in 2014. (Republican Sen. Richard Burr won a second term in 2010).
She was tempted. But Petraeus shot down her plan, Broadwell told the group "in an irritated tone," the magazine said.
Petraeus -- ex-CIA director, retired general and subject of a gushing 2012 biography by Broadwell -- interrogated her about her positions on several issues: abortion, climate change, gun control, gay marriage, tax cuts, Social Security vouchers.
"Her answers, he told her, would not fit either party and she should not sell herself out," Time reported.
Like Petraeus, Broadwell graduated from the U.S. Military Academy. She went on to become a counterterrorism expert. Her book is titled "All In: The Education of General David Petraeus."
-- Tim Funk
Friday, November 16, 2012
North Carolina -- home to former Sen.. John Edwards and future Sen. Paula Broadwell?
Monday, November 5, 2012
If you needed further proof that the Democratic National Convention was a nonstop party, here it is. The 362 political fundraisers held in Charlotte during those four days drove the city to the No. 2 spot on the Sunlight Foundation's annual ranking of political fundraising cities.
The Tuesday and Wednesday of convention week turned out to be the busiest fundraising days of the entire year, according to the foundation, with 249 political parties between them.
Washington D.C., naturally, again hosted the most fundraisers, with 1,128. Tampa, home to this year's Republican National Convention, came in third at 209.
The DNC-related parties accounted for 85 percent of the total number of political fundraisers in Charlotte during the entire year. The city's overall total this year was 423.
The rest of the top 10:
- New York City: 69
- San Francisco: 36
- Chicago: 25
- Los Angeles: 25
- Boston: 23
- St. Petersburg, Fla.: 21
- Denver: 16
Thursday, November 1, 2012
A lot more could be riding on the Panthers-Redskins game this weekend than Carolina's season. If history is any indication, another Panthers loss would signal that President Barack Obama would be re-elected.
CBS Sports reports that in 17 of 18 Washington Redskins games before presidential elections, a Redskins win has been followed by the incumbent party staying in power. A Redkins loss has been followed by the opposition party taking the White House.
It's called the Redskins Rule, and it has been well documented.
The only deviation was in 2004, when the Redskins lost to the Packers but President George W. Bush was re-elected.
The Redskins (3-5) are 3.5 point favorites over the visiting Panthers (1-6).
So much for North Carolina being a key battleground state.
Neither President Barack Obama nor Republican challenger Mitt Romney are scheduled to make stops in the state before Election Day, according to several reports from the campaign trail.
The candidates' scheduled appearances are starting to be released after both cut campaigning short as superstorm Sandy pummeled the East Coast.
Both are making swings through Ohio, Wisconsin, Virginia, Iowa, Colorado and New Hampshire.
The most recent updates came from NBC News reporter Mark Murray:
Obama's final sked: THU -- WI, NV, CO; FRI -- OH; SAT -- OH, WI, IA, VA; SUN -- NH, FL, OH, CO; MON -- WI, OH, IA
— Mark Murray (@mmurraypolitics) November 1, 2012
Romney's final sked: THU -- VA; FRI -- WI, OH; SAT -- IA, NH, CO; SUN: --TDB; MON --NHFrom an RNC spokesman:
— Mark Murray (@mmurraypolitics) November 1, 2012
.@stefcutter to @chucktodd "We are hitting every battleground state." They are not going to NC. All you need to know about NC.The Romney campaign said Wednesday that North Carolina was drifting away from Obama. The president's campaign, for its part, said Monday the state was very much in play.
— Tim Miller (@Timodc) November 1, 2012
Vice President Joe Biden's wife, Jill Biden, is still scheduled to campaign in Huntersville and Asheville on Friday.
UPDATE: Looks like the Obama campaign is still thinking about North Carolina. Michelle Obama is now scheduled to visit Charlotte on Monday.
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Jill Biden will rally Obama campaign volunteers in Huntersville on Friday.
The presidential race in North Carolina remains neck-and-neck, according to a new poll, with virtually no voters still undecided.
The survey, released Wednesday by Raleigh-based Public Policy Polling, found President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney tied with 49 percent each.
The poll also found that Obama is winning among early voters in the state, 58 percent to 41 percent. Romney is ahead among those who have not yet voted, 58 percent to 40 percent, according to the survey from the Democratic-leaning firm.
This is the second week in a row that PPP found the presidential race deadlocked in North Carolina.
But PPP's Wednesday survey comes on the heels of a poll done for WRAL-TV in Raleigh that found Romney ahead 50 percent to 45 percent in the Tar Heel State.
Both campaigns addressed their North Carolina prospects during Wednesday conference calls with reporters. Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said that "our margin continues to increase every day in (early voting sites) all across the state.
"He hasn't put a single battleground state away," Messina said. "remember when Romney was going to leave North Carolina (by pulling out some staff)? They've now raced to increase their TV ads there." That, added Messina, is "the clearest sign of all" that North Carolina is till up for grabs.
"This is one that I get a kick out of that I'm still talking about," political director Rich Beeson said while commenting on the different battleground states.
He said that while early voting turnout still favors registered Democrats in North Carolina, Republicans have cut that gap by 100,000 votes from 2008 numbers.
"North Carolina continues to move further and further from (Obama), as evidenced that they have not had the president down there since he left the convention," Beeson said, referring to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.
-- Tim Funk and Andrew Dunn
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's campaign team said on a conference call with reporters Wednesday that North Carolina is drifting away from President Barack Obama.
"This is one that I get a kick out of that I"m still talking about," political director Rich Beeson said while going through a list of the campaign's thoughts on battleground states.
He said that while early voting turnout still favors registered Democrats in North Carolina, Republicans have cut that gap by 100,000 votes from 2008 numbers.
"North Carolina continues to move further and further from him, as evidenced that they have not had the president down there since he left the convention," Beeson said, referring to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.
Obama's campaign would not say Monday whether Obama would make another appearance in North Carolina, but said they felt the state was still very much in play.
Public Policy Polling had the candidates tied at 49 percent on Wednesday. A WRAL poll Tuesday had Romney ahead 50-45.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
A survey released Tuesday by WRAL-TV found that, a week before Election Day, former Massachussets Gov. Mitt Romney leads President Barack Obama, 50 percent to 45 percent in North Carolina.
The Raleigh-Durham TV station's poll, conducted by SurveyUSA, comes on the heels of three other state polls -- released between last Thursday and Monday -- that said the presidential race in the Tar Heel State is neck-and-neck.
That was also the verdict in WRAL's last poll, from four weeks ago. But the one released Tuesday found that Romney had moved into a lead by eliminating Obama's advantage with female voters. They are now tied at 47 percent among women, the poll found.
Romney was ahead among independents and weathier voters, according to WRAL.
Favoring Obama: Young voters.
With early voting in the state underway, the WRAL survey found that Obama leads among people who have already voted (56 percent to 43 percent).
But those who said they plan to vote in Election Day favor Romney, 60 percent to 33 percent.
-- Tim Funk
Monday, October 29, 2012
Following the tweets @jimmorrill:
R Richard Hudson in #NC08 outraises D Larry Kissell 5-1 in first part of Oct. He got $90K from PACs, 3 x all of what Kissell raised. #NCPOL
Republican Robt. Pittenger in #NC09loaned his campaign $25K in Oct., otherwise outraised by Dem. Jennifer Roberts $76K to $66K. #NCPOL
The Obama campaign believes North Carolina is still in play and is increasing its television ad spending in the state, but would not say Monday whether President Barack Obama would make an appearance here before the election.
"We continue to believe on the ground we can win it," campaign manager Jim Messina said of North Carolina on a conference call with reporters Monday morning.
Messina and senior strategist David Axelrod said Obama was leading in every battleground state and said they were impressed with early voting results, including in North Carolina.
"I am ridiculously proud of what the North Carolina staff has put on the ground with our volunteers," Messina said.
When asked about whether Obama would make a North Carolina stop in the next eight days, Messina said the campaign has been re-assessing the scheduling after Hurricane Sandy changed plans.
"We're looking very closely at where we're sending him," Messina said, citing recent N.C. visits from Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama in the state.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
President Barack Obama's use of a barnyard epithet to describe Republican candidate Mitt Romney in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine is causing quite the stir around the Internet this morning.
Here's how Politico summed it up:
FIRST LOOK – Rolling Stone cover, “Obama and the Road Ahead: The Rolling Stone Interview,” by Douglas Brinkley: “We arrived at the Oval Office for our 45-minute interview … on the morning of October 11th. … As we left the Oval Office, executive editor Eric Bates told Obama that he had asked his six-year-old if there was anything she wanted him to say to the president. … [S]he said, ‘Tell him: You can do it.’ Obama grinned. … ‘You know, kids have good instincts,’ Obama offered. ‘They look at the other guy and say, “Well, that’s a bullshitter, I can tell.”’”Tweets are pouring in, the majority of them negative (warning, the profanity continues).
Business Insider: "This is the first time we can ever recall a President using that sort of language in an interview. We look forward to hearing the White House's response."
Politico: "That's some frank language from Obama, who has a genuine disdain for GOP challenger Mitt Romney, as POLITICO's Glenn Thrush has reported."
Twitchy: "Just when you thought President Obama couldn't stoop any lower, here he goes again."
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
North Carolina is not included in the newest round of TV ads being aired by the re-election campaign of President Barack Obama.
One new ad is running in Nevada, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Ohio and Virginia. A second ad is running in those states as well as New Hampshire and Wisconsin.
But the Obama campaign was still running a 60-second ad in North Carolina that featured Obama speaking into the camera.
On Tuesday, top Obama campaign officials denied suggestions that they were writing off North Carolina at a time when polls give Republican challenger Mitt Romney a slight lead in the state.
Obama campaign manager pointed to TV ads running in the state as well as recent visits by Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama. But the Democratic president himself has not been to North Carolina since early September, when he gave his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.
-- The News & Observer
Monday, October 15, 2012
Republican Mitt Romney has taken a slight lead in North Carolina, according to the latest Public Policy Polling survey.
The former Massachusetts governor is the choice of 49 percent of likely N.C. voters, the poll found, while President Barack Obama is the pick of 47 percent.
Two weeks ago, PPP -- a Democratic-leaning firm -- had the two presidential candidates at 48 percent apiece.
It's still close: Romney's lead is within the poll's margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent.
But PPP said that Romney's performance in his first debate with Obama improved his image in the Tar Heel State. Now, 49 percent of N.C. voters have a favorable view of him, compared to 46 percent who don't. That's a reversal of what his favorability/unfavorability numbers were in the last PPP poll.
PPP said Romney is ahead in North Carolina mainly for two reasons: He has a 30 point advantage with white voters (63 percent to 33 percent) and he leads among independent voters, 54 percent to 40 percent.
In other other findings, N.C. voters thought, by 46 percent to 42 percent, that Vice President Joe Biden won the recent vice presidential debate. But they have a slighter higher opinion of Romney's running mate, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, 48 percent to Biden's 47 percent.
"North Carolina continues to look like one of the closest states in the country," PPP President Dean Debnam said in a news release. "But things are trending a little bit in Mitt Romney's direction and Obama needs a strong performance (in the second debate) Tuesday night to get things going back in the other direction."
PPP surveyed 1,084 likely N.C. voters last weekend (Oct. 12-14).
North Carolina is one of nine battleground states in the presidential race. The others: Ohio, Florida, Virginia, Iowa, New Hampshire, Colorado, Nevada, and Wisconsin.
-- Tim Funk
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Two new signs that North Carolina remains a battleground in the presidential race:
- Mike Huckabee will join Mitt Romney at the GOP presidential candidate's Thursday night rally in Asheville. Also on the bill at the 6 p.m. event at the U.S. Cellular Center: country music singer Ronnie Milsap.
- Jill Biden will visit the state Saturday to attend "Women for Obama-Biden" events. No details yet on where in North Carolina she'll be, but her trip will come just two days after her husband, Vice President Joe Biden, debates Romney's running mate, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
A celebrity-filled video shot during the recent Democratic National Convention in Charlotte has been released by Obama's North Carolina campaign.
Its subject: The benefits of early voting, which starts Oct. 18 in North Carolina.
"Gotta Vote" features Eva Longoria, Alexis Bledel, Zach Braff, Aisha Taylor, Elizabeth Banks, Alfre Woodard and Olivia Wilde.
Its intended audience are voter groups President Barack Obama is counting on in November, er, Oct. 18 and beyond. Namely, young people, African Americans and women.
Early voting in North Carolina goes from Oct. 18 to Nov. 3. North Carolinians can go to any early vote location in their county and register and vote at the same time on the same day. Deatils: www,gottavote.com.
Election Day is Nov. 6.
In 2008, Obama carried North Carolina by just 14,000 votes -- a victory margin of 0.3 percent. He became the first Democratic presidential candidate to win the state since Jimmy Carter in 1976.
Obama did it by building up a big lead in early voting. Sen. John McCain, the Republican candidate, won among voters who cast their ballots on Election Day in 2008. But his totals weren't enough to catch up with Obama, who won the early vote.
-- Tim Funk
Friday, September 28, 2012
A new NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll has good news for Democrat Barack Obama and for Republican Pat McCrory in North Carolina.
The poll, released Friday, shows Obama with the support of 48 percent of likely North Carolina voters to 46 percent for Mitt Romney. It's the latest in a series of polls by the NBC partnership that show Obama leading his Republican opponent in swing states.
In North Carolina, Obama is up by 1.1 points in the Real Clear Politics polling average.
"This was the closest of the battleground states four years ago and it is close again this time," said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. "The competitive presidential contest is not, however, spilling over to the race for governor."
The poll shows McCrory leading Democratic Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton 52 percent to 39 percent. Jim Morrill
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Vice President Joe Biden will campaign in Charlotte on Tuesday (Oct. 2), an Obama campaign official said Wednesday.
More details on his itinerary are to come.
Biden's return to North Carolina comes as the race for the state's 15 electoral votes is heating up.
The vice president's stop follows a visit to Durham last week by First Lady Michelle Obama.
On the Republican side, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan -- GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney's running mate -- also stopped in North Carolina this month.
And this week, two high-profile Republican surrogates -- U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina -- have campaigned for Romney-Ryan in the Tar Heel State.
Both campaigns are also airing new TV ads in the state, where Romney and Democratic President Barack Obama are virtually tied in recent polls.
-- Tim Funk
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Republican Robert Pittenger and Democrat Jennifer Roberts meet for the first debate of their 9th Congressional District campaign Wednesday afternoon at the Charlotte Chamber.
Both are trying to replace Republican U.S. Rep Sue Myrick in the district's first open-seat election since 1994.
The meeting will be preceded by two legislative debates. Democratic Rep. Martha Alexander and Republican Rob Bryan will face off for the House District 88 seat and Democrat Robin Bradford and Republican Charles Jeter will debate for the newly created seat from District 92.
Sunday, September 23, 2012
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio -- one of the GOP's rising stars -- is scheduled to be in Charlotte on Wednesday afternoon (Sept. 26) for a Romney-Ryan "Victory Rally."
The Florida Republican will speak to Mitt Romney supporters at 1:45 p.m. at SteelFab, Inc., 8623 Old Dowd Road, according to an email from the Romney campaign.
Rubio was among those considered by Romney as a running mate. The Cuban-American lawmaker, who introduced Romney at the recent Republican National Convention in Tampa, is also touted as a future presidential candidate.
-- Tim Funk
Thursday, September 6, 2012
Charlotte Chamber CEO has been making television appearances all week talking up the city as the country's fastest growing metropolitan area.
On Fox Business, Morgan said the convention was Charlotte's "debut" and said the city is "doing pretty well economically by this convention."
On C-SPAN's Washington Journal, Morgan described the city's rise into a major financial center and touted the city's manufacturing. When asked about hwether the city had contingency plans for more trouble at Bank of America or Wells Fargo, he praised the two big banks for bringing wealth to the city and said "very little gets done civically" without their taking a lead role.
Beyond that, he said the city continues to diversify its corporate base, though he also said other banks like PNC and BB&T have been increasing their presence in the city.
You might have missed the North Carolina's delegation in the roll call vote, since they didn't get to cast their votes until well after midnight. But they spoke briefly before casting 152 of their 157 votes for President Obama.
You can watch them above, courtesy of a clip from C-SPAN.
Here's our brief transcript. The clip starts with the tail end of New York's vote.
Charlotte businessman Cameron Harris: "The great and sovereign state of North Carolina, the cradle of liberty, is delighted to host the Democratic convention in Charlotte, North Carolina."
Democratic Party chairman David Parker: "Madam secretary, North Carolina, the state of our great Gov. Beverly Perdue, our fantastic Sen. Kay Hagan, where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great, where we will elect Walter Dalton our next governor, where we voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and where we will carry North Carolina again in 2012, to keep this recovery going, to keep our American dream alive, North Carolina proudly casts 152 votes for Barack Obama."
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Here's the serendipity of conventions: You run into all sorts of people from the world of politics. Here are three:
-- James Carville: The Democratic strategist and TV talking head was relaxing outside the CNN booth at Time-Warner Arena. I asked him if he thought holding the DNC in Charlotte would help President Obama's campaign.
"I hope so," he said. "I'm always sort of skeptical that a convention site in early September brings voters in early November."
He also said if Mitt Romney loses North Carolina, he loses the election.
-- Jeff Greenfield: The TV analyst was with his friend Joe Klein at a Sunday reception at the Duke Energy building. He likes Charlotte as a host city.
"It's great, he said. "The whole uptown area is so amenable. The folks are terrific. The venues are spectacular."
-- Chris Lehane: The Democratic strategist turned film-writer is here in part to screen his new film "Knife Fight" starring Rob Lowe about corrupt California politics. He showed parts of it at a Politico Playbook breakfast hosted by Mike Allen at Packard Place.
He called conventions "a political appendix," vestiges of another era. This is the first year parties will have done both their conventions in three days, not four.
"Between Tampa and Charlotte, they'll be inflection point conventions," he said. Jim Morrill
Monday, September 3, 2012
Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers defended President Barack Obama and talked up Charlotte during an interview with CNN's Soledad O'Brien on her show Monday morning.
When asked about whether the country is better off now than four years ago, Rogers first talked about how energy efficiency has improved over Obama's term and how natural gas has emerged as a low-cost energy source.
When pressed about the economy, Rogers said Obama started in a "deep hole" that he's worked out of.
"The more relevant question is, are we on the right trend?" Rogers said. "Are we moving in the right direction?"
O'Brien also asked Rogers about Charlotte and whether the city can handle the convention despite its relatively small size.
"Charlotte has a history of punching above its weight," Rogers said. "Charlotte has a history of re-inventing itself. Charlotte is a can-do city."
Rogers and the panel went on to talk briefly about carbon regulations and cap-and-trade. You can read a transcript of the interview here.
Possible thunderstorms could move President Barack Obama's Thursday night acceptance speech indoors -- a contingency plan that would frustrate tens of thousands of North Carolinians now planning to watch the speech at Bank of American Stadium.
With forecasts calling for a 50 percent chance of thunderstorms Thursday -- though clearer skies by nightfall -- Obama campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter raised the possibility Monday morning that the president may have to deliver his speech in Time Warner Cable Arena.
"We're still hopeful we can speak in the stadium," Cutter said on MSNBC's Daily Rundown show. "We've got tens of thousands of people from all over North Carolina and the country traveling here for that, with enormous enthusiasm for it. But we always knew this could be part of the plan. We'll make a call sometime in the near future about whether to move it indoors."
But later Monday morning, at a news conference at the Charlotte Convention Center, convention committee CEO Steve Kerrigan told reporters: "This is going forward, rain or shine."
Kerrigan added, though, that a contingency plan was on the table if thunderstorms pose safety issues.
In Tampa last week, Tropical Storm Isaac forced Republicans to change their plans, shortening their convention by a day.
-- Tim Funk and Ann Doss Helms
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa says to expect 65,000 people to be in Bank of America on Thursday night for President Barack Obama's acceptance speech.
Speaking Monday at uptown's POLITICO Playbook Breakfast, the mayor and chair of the 2012 Democratic National Convention also acknowledged that delegates in Charlotte may have to give themseves some extra time all week to maneuver the various security arrangements on their way to events and Time Warner Cable Arena.
When the Democrats held their convention in his city in 2000, Villaraigosa told host Mike Allen and his audience, "LA felt like it went very smoothly -- because that was before September 11 . . . I hope it's going to go as smoothly as possibly here."
When asked about Charlotte, though, Villaraigosa showered the Queen City and its residents with compliments.
"Don't you just love the Southern hospitality? They're so warm, so gracious," he said. "I love the trees, This is a beautiful city . . . This is a city where you'd want to love."
The mayor also gave a shout-out to Osso restaurant and the whole N.C. Music Factoy complex. And he called Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx "the face of the New South."
-- Tim Funk
Three new polls are showing the race in North Carolina continues to be tight between President Obama and Mitt Romney.
-- A new survey by Public Policy Polling, a Democratic-leaning firm, shows the two tied at 48 percent. The margin of error is 3.1 percentage points.
-- A poll by High Point University and Fox 8 showed Romney with 46 percent to Obama's 43 percent. The sampling error is 4.3 percentage points.
-- And an Elon University Poll, released Sunday, showed Romney up 47 percent to 43 percent. Like the High Point University Poll, it was conducted during the GOP convention. The margin of error is 3 percentage points.
Sunday, September 2, 2012
For everyone who can't be inside Time Warner Cable arena this week for the Democratic National Convention, the proceedings will be exhaustively live-streamed at DemConvention.com/live, organizers said Sunday.
The feed will be available on desktop and mobile devices, and will be broadcast in Spanish and with closed-captioning as well.
Convention organizers also hope to get people around the country involved, including highlighting the some-4,000 watch parties.
On Thursday evening, as President Barack Obama makes his acceptance speech, DemConvention.com/live will host a web-only special. Actor Kal Penn, a big Obama supporter, will interview big names including Marc Anthony, Elizabeth Banks, Aisha Tyler, Olivia Wilde, Fran Drescher, Zach Braff and Alexis Bledel.
Thursday, August 30, 2012
- Rosario Dawson (“Unstoppable”) and America Ferrera (“Ugly Betty”) are expected to show at the Voto Latino Policy Forum (Sept. 4) and the “Purple Carpet Bash” (Sept. 5).
- Kathy Mattea, Anthony Hamilton and Biz Markie will be among the 20-plus acts serenading 15,000 journos at the Charlotte host committee’s $2 mil media party, Saturdayat the N.C. Music Factory.
- Actress Thora Birch (“American Beauty”) will be here as a California delegate.
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Robert F. Kennedy’s oldest daughter, will attend the Echo Foundation's gala Monday night as well as the opening of a photo exhibit on her father's 1968 presidential campaign.
Townsend, a former Maryland lieutenant governor, will accept the Echo Foundation inaugural Family Legacy Award on behalf of the Kennedy family. She'll receive the award at the group's gala at the Knight Theater. The gala, featuring a keynote by Gen. Wesley Clark, honors Jim and Mary Lou Babb.
After the event participants head to the Observer for a reception at the exhibit of photos by Bill Eppridge, who chronicled RFK's '68 campaign.
“As we honor Robert F. Kennedy’s legacy of public service, we celebrate the extraordinary contributions to American democracy of the entire Kennedy family,” said Stephanie Ansaldo, president of The Echo Foundation. “For three generations, the Kennedy name has stood for hope, progress and unity in purpose as we work to build a more just and inclusive society for all people.”
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Republican gubernatorial candidate and former Charlotte mayor Pat McCrory will in fact be here for part of the Democratic National Convention, a spokesman confirmed today.
On Tuesday, the first official day of the convention, McCrory will be part of the Republican contingent fielding calls and doing press interviews to rebut the Democrats' talking points.
After that, he'll head to points east on his campaign.
McCrory played a similar role in 2004 during the Democratic National Convention in Boston. That year, you'll recall, John Edwards was on the ticket.
McCrory is, however, skipping the Republican convention in Tampa this week to campaign in the western part of the state. While he's in Charlotte during the convention, he might do a little campaigning among the Democrats, the News and Observer's Rob Christensen notes.
“I am proud the convention is there,” McCrory told the N&O. “I am going to try to get them to spend as much money in our state as possible to help our economy. Then I am going to try to convince as many of them who are attending from North Carolina to vote for Pat McCrory for governor. So I am going to be campaigning in Charlotte part of that time.”
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Looks like those emails referring to Charlotte's football venue as "Panthers Stadium" may not have been a fluke.
In an interview with CNN, Los Angeles mayor and Democratic National Convention chairman Antonio Villaraigosa stumbled a bit when asked by CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin about the reports of referring to Bank of America Stadium by another name. Villaraigosa is in Tampa this week to provide a counterpoint to the Republican convention.
"Do you have a problem with a big-bank sponsor?" Baldwin asked him.
Villaraigosa said he didn't, but noted that the Panthers do play there and that they're a "great football team." (He a fan?)
"I'm just calling it the football stadium," he said. He also said the convention is proud to be in Charlotte and in North Carolina.
The video was posted to YouTube by a Republican organization, but you can verify its context by reading a transcript provided by CNN itself.
Monday, August 27, 2012
Republican Richard Hudson planned to take the podium in the Tampa Bay Times Forum Monday, but not to address delegates. Instead, he was going to practice.
Organizers scheduled a 30-minute rehearsal for Hudson’s 2-minute speech on Tuesday. The congressional candidate in the 8th District will speak to delegates, or as many of them are in the hall on Tuesday afternoon.
“I’m going to make the point that President Obama’s policies, supported by (incumbent Democratic Rep.) Larry Kissell, are hurting real North Carolinians,” he said.
Another GOP congressional candidate, David Rouzer in the competitive 7th District, also will speak to delegates.
One congressional candidate who won’t is Charlotte’s Jack Brosch. He’s running in the heavily Democratic 12th District against longtime Rep. Mel Watt. He didn’t seem bothered by the speaking snub.
“I understand there’s a limited amount of time and pretty much an unlimited amount of candidates,” he said.
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
AP has spoken: Wire service stories about our big-enough-to-get-the-DNC city will continue to have Charlotte, N.C., not just Charlotte, as the dateline.
CLT crusader Jill Santuccio got the dispiriting news in an email from thDavid Mintorn, AP Stylebook co-editor.
“AP stories are transmitted globally, and more detailed datelines help readers overseas and elsewhere grasp news locations,” he e-wrote.
So why standalone datelines for Denver? Baltimore? St. friggin’ Louis?
Santuccio – owner of PRISM Communications, a Charlotte PR firm – says she’s not giving up.
Next step: A petition!
Did Charlotte hotels price-gouge the DNC?
That's what Nashville superdelegate Will T. Cheek tells the Tennessean newspaper. Public officials in the state capital have been considering whether the city should put in a bid to host a political convention, encouraged by the decision to choose relatively-small Charlotte.
But Cheek said convention organizers have run into problems with the size of the market, including hotel chains jacking up prices because they knew the DNC would have no other options. To find space for all the state delgations, the DNC had to spill over into neighboring towns.
"Charlotte is becoming real difficult," the eighth-time convention-goer told the Tennessean.
Cheek declined to speak to the Observer on the subject.
U.S. Rep . John Lewis, a star of the civil rights movement, will take a break from the convention on Sept. 5 to tell an auditorium full of students how crucial it is to stay in school, get an education and prepare for life.
The Georgia congressman will also talk about his own youth: At 21, as a seminary student-turned-Freedom Rider, he got beat up by bigots for daring to pass through a “whites-only” entrance at the Rock Hill bus station.
That was 1961. Four years later, while marching for voting rights in Alabama, he suffered a skull fracture when cops billy-clubbed him. In between – 1963 – he joined Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in speaking at the March on Washington.
Introducing Lewis to the students at East Meck will be former CLT Mayor Harvey Gantt, who made civil rights history himself when he became the first black student to be admitted to Clemson University.
Joan O’Brien, executive director of the East Meck HS Foundation, said she’s been working since March to get Lewis.
"He said 'yes' right away; since then, it's been staying in touch," she said. "I decided if we were going to have all these congressmen in town, we should get one well respected on both sides of the aisle."
-- Tim Funk
Caroline Kennedy and actress Eva Longoria are among the latest speakers to be added to the DNC slate this morning.
Both are co-chairwomen of President Obama's re-election campaign.
Other speakers announced this morning:
- Rep. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin
- Tammy Duckworth, former assistant secretary in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and a candidate for Congress from Illinois
- Sandra Fluke, Georgetown University student memorably called a nasty name by Rush Limbaugh
- Denise Juneau, Montana's state superintendent of public instruction
- Nancy Keenan, President of NARAL Pro-Choice America
- Lilly Ledbetter, activist known for advocating for equal pay for men and women
- U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski of Maryland, who the DNCC says will stand together with the women of the U.S. Senate
- Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
A Democratic official says Georgetown University student Sandra Fluke has been added to the roster of speakers at next month's Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.
In an incident that Democrats charged was part of a GOP "war on women," Fluke was called a slut by conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh for favoring President Barack Obama's health care law requiring contraception coverage.
No day or time for Fluke's speech has been released, but she's expected to reach out to women voters and, like all the other Democratic convention speakers, cast Obama as the best choice for the middle class.
-- Tim Funk
With the DNC convention rolling into town in (only) 14 days, just about every national news organization has dispatched someone to Charlotte to tell their readers what they should expect when they get here. And it seems like the city can all be summed up in just a few themes.
That’s not to say they’re incorrect or misleading. A number of the publications tapped local (or semi-local) reporters to unveil the Queen City. But they are undoubtedly interesting.
Here are the unofficial top five things the outside world is learning about Charlotte, ranked by number of mentions in the city profiles I’ve found.
1) It’s the second-largest financial center outside New York. No, the Bank Town moniker hasn’t faded a bit. Yes, Bank of America is headquartered here, despite rare appearances from CEO Brian Moynihan. Hugh McColl will sometimes make a bonus appearance. (Boston Globe, New York Times, National Journal, Tampa Bay Times, Huffington Post, Associated Press(x 2), CNN)
2) This is the “New South.” We have skyscrapers, we care about more than Nascar and Billy Graham, we’ve outgrown tobacco and textiles, we compete with Atlanta. We even have a museum devoted to it. This storyline often gets mixed up in a discussion of North Carolina as a swing state, rapidly urbanizing yet keeping a rural core. The recent gay marriage constitutional amendment, which Mecklenburg County voted against, is Exhibit A. (Boston Globe, National Journal, Tampa Bay Times, Associated Press (x 2), Washington Times, National Journal, CNN, Huffington Post)
3) There aren’t many unions here. North Carolina is the least unionized state, and Charlotte is its business hub. Labor unions are mad Democrats picked here to host their convention. (Tampa Bay Times, National Journal, New York Times, Associated Press, Huffington Post)
4) Amelie’s is a cool place. No local establishment has gotten more attention than the trendy-cool NoDa joint. Price’s Chicken Coop is probably in second. (Boston Globe, New York Times, CNN, Associated Press)
5) We’re a little insecure. Charlotte is a city that hasn’t quite found its footing. We have an “inferiority complex,” and we’re even a “debutant.” Only a few publications went straight out and said it; it’s often couched in the banks’ struggles and the city’s reinvention. (Washington Times, Associated Press, National Journal)
Monday, August 20, 2012
The Democratic National Convention today announced more speakers for its Sept. 4-6 gathering:
-- Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel
-- California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris
-- Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper
-- Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine
-- U.S. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts
-- Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley
-- Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick
-- Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland
-- Jim Morrill
Sunday, August 19, 2012
Saturday, August 18, 2012
An army of A-list celebs and politicos are expected to show up at the N.C. Music Factory on Sept. 5 for a Hollywood-themed gala hosted by L.A. Mayor – and Dem convention chairman – Antonio Villaraigosa.
The Dish has learned that the Factory’s Fountain Plaza and Osso Restaurant will get a one-night make-over. Picture palm trees, hints of classic L.A. architecture and lots of California wine.
Villaraigosa offered his vision for the party during a recent CLT stopover. Dining at Osso with Factory prez Noah Lazes, His Honor said he’d invite stars.
"I’ll call Eva," he name-dropped – a reference to former "Desperate Housewife" Eva Longoria, now a national co-chair of President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign.
The event is a benefit gala under the glamorous auspices of The Creative Coalition, an advocacy group for the arts and entertainment community.
Based on its Web site photos (www.thecreativecoalition.org), the group draws some of Hollywood’s hottest to their events.
Set to perform "Love Shack" and other dance-able hits that night: The B-52s.
-- Tim Funk
The Neighborhood Theatre announced this week that regional favorites Acoustic Syndicate will return to the NoDa venue for Occupy Your Mind Thursday, September 6. The Western Carolina group will share the stage with Brooklyn's Breaking Laces and Folly Beach, SC's Dangermuffin. Tickets are $10 and available through www.neighborhoodtheatre.com.
Also open to the public are previously announced concerts from R&B singer Kem at Ovens Auditorium and the Rock the Red concert with Travis Tritt, Lee Brice, and the Charlie Daniels Band at Bojangles' Coliseum. Both of those concerts take place Wednesday, September 5. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster outlets.
Friday, August 17, 2012
Facebook is sometimes known for ill-advised party pics, but during the DNC, the newly public social media giant will be hosting shindigs of its own.
No word, though, on whether Mark Zuckerberg and his hoodie will make an appearance in Charlotte.
The company unveiled its plans for Charlotte and the RNC in Tampa this week through a post on a page run by its Politics & Government team.
Facebook will host receptions "honoring pro-technology legislators and highlighting the contributions of leading high-tech innovators to the strength of the American economy," the company said.