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Friday, July 29, 2016

North Carolina Voter ID Law Is Discriminatory, Federal Appeals Court Rules, Striking It Down

Posted By on Fri, Jul 29, 2016 at 1:18 PM

A major victory for voting rights in North Carolina today: A federal appeals court in Richmond has struck down the state's 2013 voter ID law. The decision reverses a lower court's April ruling that upheld the law.  In an opinion issued today, a three-judge panel found that "the photo ID requirement, the reduction in days of early voting, and the elimination of same-day registration, out-of-precinct voting, and preregistration...were enacted with racially discriminatory intent in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and § 2 of the Voting Rights Act."  In other words: Moving forward, there will be no photo ID requirements,...

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Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Morning Roundup: HB 2 Gets Dissed in Philly, Raleigh

Posted By on Thu, Jul 28, 2016 at 8:32 AM

Good morning, everyone! Happy Thursday. Members of the U.S. Congressional Black Caucus and North Carolina congressman G.K. Butterfield spoke to the DNC last night, endorsing Hillary Clinton for president. Congressman Butterfield's main argument to vote for Hillary seemed to hinge on the fact that Donald Trump isn't qualified to be president and doesn't have any kind of plan to address issues facing black communities (or any other issues).  Raleigh tech entrepreneur Brooks Bell spoke too. She started her own  company and then  suffered a stroke at twenty-three. She had to relearn to read, write and talk, but she and...

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

NCGOP Makes Big Mistake in Calling Out Tim Kaine

Posted By on Wed, Jul 27, 2016 at 11:17 PM

Ben Amey is a reporter in Albany, New York. NCGOP is the official Twitter account of the North Carolina Republican Party. Outstanding. UPDATE: (h/t Ben Amey / Colin Campbell)...

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North Carolina Democrats Bring Out the Heavy Hitters For Kaine

Posted By on Wed, Jul 27, 2016 at 2:50 PM

Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine is set to give the biggest speech of his life tonight at the Democratic National Convention, and North Carolina Democrats rolled out a series of endorsements for Kaine from some of the party's best-known names in the state. Former governor Jim Hunt said Kaine "is the best candidate Hillary Clinton could have possibly chosen for Vice President," while Attorney General and gubernatorial nominee Roy Cooper said "the people of North Carolina will profit from the values Tim Kaine believes in." Former Senator Kay Hagan, who served with Kaine on the Senate Armed Services Committee...

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The Morning Roundup: More History Being Made

Posted By on Wed, Jul 27, 2016 at 7:56 AM

Good morning. Just sitting here enjoying a bowl of Kroger® bran flakes and catching up on the news of yesterday. Join me, won't you?  1. Hillary Clinton formally wins Democratic nomination. Lots of hoopla in Philadelphia last night in celebration of the first woman ever picked to lead a major party in America. Bill Clinton gave a rousing and heartfelt speech. Bernie Sanders made a strong gesture toward unity. Madeline Albright discussed how terrifying it is that Trump thinks Putin is a cool dude. Lena Dunham was there, too? We've got a man on the ground covering the spectacle. Check...

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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Someone at the DNC Called Our Coward Governor a "Moronic Little Bigot," Get the Tissues

Posted By on Tue, Jul 26, 2016 at 1:59 PM

WSOC in Charlotte has a story out today with a North Carolina spin on the Democratic National Committee's embarrassing email scandal. Fortunately, they let the North Carolina Republican Party dominate the narrative, which is that calling Pat McCrory a "moronic little bigot of a tarheel (sic) governor" is the worst thing you could ever imagine. Investigative reporter Paul Boyd spoke to Governor McCrory’s campaign spokesman Ricky Diaz by phone Monday. "Our hearts just sink when we see that kind of language being used. It's unacceptable. You know, it's a shame that Democrats are being politically correct to the public...

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Rejoice, Raleigh: Harris Teeter to Open in Seaboard Station

Posted By on Tue, Jul 26, 2016 at 10:07 AM

Downtown Raleigh dwellers' decade-long wait for a grocery store to open in their general proximity can celebrate today. The Triangle Business Journal reports that a 55-thousand- square- foot, one-level Harris Teeter is set to open in Seaboard Station! Billie Redmond, CEO of Trademark Properties, which oversees management and leasing of Seaboard Station, says they are still working through details of the plan but confirms that a written agreement has been signed with Harris Teeter. "We've probably looked at 15 different concepts on how to make this work, but we will be expanding our retail and we want to keep every...

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Monday, July 25, 2016

Is the Durham GOP’s New Headquarters Violating Zoning Laws?

Posted By on Mon, Jul 25, 2016 at 2:38 PM

About six weeks ago, Trace Ramsey noticed new neighbors moving their belongings into 215 North Briggs Avenue, the long-vacant house next door to him in east Durham. Not long after, he says, he observed people out in the yard, trimming the lawn and the bushes. But nobody was sleeping there at night. “So, a few weeks ago, I walked over and peeked in the window,” Ramsey says, “and there was this big ‘DURHAM REPUBLICANS’ banner in the living room.” Ramsey did a little research online and discovered that his new neighbor was, in fact, the Durham County Republican Party....

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The Morning Roundup: Stumbling Into Philadelphia

Posted By on Mon, Jul 25, 2016 at 8:34 AM

Good morning, hope you stayed cool over the weekend. 1. The DNC starts.  First off, Hillary Clinton picked her VP nominee, Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia. Kaine is a former DNC chair and governor of Virginia. Here's some of his bonafides: Kaine has a solid record on many core Democratic issues. He supports President Obama’s Affordable Care Act and has long been opposed to the use of the death penalty. Kaine is a strong supporter of comprehensive immigration reform, favoring a pathway to citizenship for immigrants. As governor, he pushed to offer universal pre-kindargarten and also signed a bill toban...

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Friday, July 22, 2016

Dan Forest Says We "Misunderstand" HB 2

Posted By on Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 3:08 PM

Yesterday, we asked Lt. Governor Dan Forest for a response to the NBA pulling the All-Star Game out of Charlotte, and if he still agrees with his press secretary's comments (in a March 24 email obtained in a public records request) about the NBA: "Hey NBA...Time warner arena can let transgenders (sic) in their bathrooms if they want! Shaking my head." Forest's press secretary sent us the lieutenant governor's rambling statement yesterday. Today, he responded to the other question, and told us we don't understand HB 2.  "In response to your question as to whether I agree with a statement...

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Pat McCrory Has Lost It

Posted By on Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 11:21 AM

The NBA moved the NBA All Star game out of Charlotte yesterday, and Republicans sure are pissed about it. The office of Lt. Gov. Dan Forest sent us a statement riddled with errors and fearmongering after we posted our original story about it yesterday, but it turns out Forest isn't the only one losing his tenuous grasp on reality.  Chris Sgro, the Equality NC director who served in the short session as a state representative from Greensboro, had a pretty interesting interaction with McCrory as he was walking into a press conference in Charlotte. From Sgro's Twitter: "The governor...

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The Morning Roundup: Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

Posted By on Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 8:01 AM

1. The Speech If you missed Trump’s RNC acceptance speech last night, you can find the text of the speech here; but really, to get the whole effect, you need to watch the video—seventy-six minutes (that’s six minutes longer than Bill Clinton in 1996 and the longest convention speech in modern history) of an angry old man yelling about how terrible everything is and what a dystopian hellscape America has become and how Syrian refugees and Mexican immigrants are going to murder your children while Hillary Clinton watches and cheers.  http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/22/us/politics/donald-trump-rnc-speech.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=span-abc-region®ion=span-abc-region&WT.nav=span-abc-region Americans watching this address tonight have seen the...

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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Charlotte Is Losing the All-Star Game

Posted By on Thu, Jul 21, 2016 at 4:29 PM

We sort of knew this was coming when the legislature's plans to "fix" HB 2 fell apart at the end of the session, but now it's (nearly) confirmed: the NBA is moving the 2017 All-Star game out of Charlotte. Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reports (emphasis ours): A formal announcement on the NBA’s withdrawal out of Charlotte is expected as soon as this week, league sources said Thursday. NBA commissioner Adam Silver had threatened to move All-Star Weekend out of Charlotte unless a discriminatory North Carolina law aimed at the state’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community was changed – and time...

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Worst Governor in America Says North Carolina Must Rally Behind McCrory

Posted By on Thu, Jul 21, 2016 at 3:28 PM

All these horrible ideas the Republicans in charge of North Carolina have tried to push through these last four years? A lot of them have already been implemented in Kansas, the land of my birth and the home of my kin. Kansas has always been a conservative place, but since Sam Brownback was elected governor, in 2010, Kansas has gone completely off the rails. In 2012, Brownback signed into law a massive tax cut for the rich and eliminated the corporate income tax for small businesses. He literally called it an "experiment" and said it would be a "shot of...

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The Morning Roundup: Vote Your Conscience

Posted By on Thu, Jul 21, 2016 at 8:38 AM

Good morning, everyone!  Like a high-speed vehicular wreck that you don't really want to witness, but from which you somehow cannot bring yourself to look away, the Republican National Convention crashes along in Cleveland. Indiana governor Mike Pence accepted the nomination for vice president last night, but the big story of course was that Ted Cruz rambled on in a speech for twenty-three minutes and never actually endorsed Donald Trump for president. At least one of those things was unexpected. "Vote your conscience," said Ted. Here is some video of him getting booed.  Meanwhile, Barry Yeoman, covering the convention...

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Mike Krzyzewski Weighs in on HB 2

Posted By on Wed, Jul 20, 2016 at 6:49 PM

Last week, the Duke men's basketball team released its schedule for the upcoming season. The Blue Devils were supposed to play Albany in November as part of the Hall of Fame Tipoff tournament, but that game is no longer taking place, owing to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's banning of non-essential travel to North Carolina by state employees in New York.  Cuomo's executive order is, of course, rooted in the hideous and shameful passing of HB 2 here in North Carolina.  USA Today caught up with Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski yesterday at a practice for the U.S. men's Olympic team,...

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The Morning Roundup: Make It Stop

Posted By on Wed, Jul 20, 2016 at 8:30 AM

Another day has dawned, and there is news to be consumed.  1. Donald Trump is officially the Republican nominee for President of the United States. The final tallying of the Republican delegates was held at the Republican National Convention last night, and the people there agreed that Donald Trump was the best person to lead the country. Then a bunch of people spoke, among them Trump's secret daughter, Tiffany; his son, Donald Trump Jr., who looks like a Happy Madison villain; Chris Christie, whose political career looks to be over; Dana White, the former president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC);...

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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Wildin Acosta Case Reopened by Board of Immigration Appeals

Posted By on Tue, Jul 19, 2016 at 1:29 PM

The twisting saga of Durham teenager Wildin Acosta took another turn today.  Acosta, a Riverside High School student arrested by Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) outside his parents' house this past January, has been in Stewart Detention Center, in rural Georgia, for nearly six months. (We visited Acosta this spring.) The nineteen-year-old is part of a great wave of Honduran immigrants who have been taken into custody at the U.S.-Mexico border, fleeing violence in their home country. Acosta was a minor at the time he crossed. Federal law grants minors a date in front of a U.S. immigration judge—and, in the meantime, the...

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Welcome to the INDY's Raleigh City Council Live Blog

Posted By on Tue, Jul 19, 2016 at 1:07 PM

Happy Tuesday, everyone. The agenda's looking pretty light today, but if you're wondering what's been up with Union Station recently—there's a giant drill, and a family of groundhogs living on the site, per my personal observations—you are in luck. City staff will provide a construction progress update, a "summary of challenges" and a timeline overview.  1:12: Mayor Nancy called the meeting to order, is taking a moment to discuss recent events re. police officer killings in several U.S. Cities. Our hearts and minds are with them and their families, she says. Raleigh has a diverse community that works together to...

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The Morning Roundup: What Have We Done?

Posted By on Tue, Jul 19, 2016 at 8:59 AM

Good morning. Burn it all.  1. The KKK in...Oakwood? The KKK did a literature drop in Oakwood on Sunday. From our story posted last night about it: The flyers are attributed to the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, which calls itself "the most active and biggest Klan in America." That group's leader, Chris Barker, told the AP in a recent story that his group has around 3,800 members; the Jewish Anti-Defamation League puts that number closer to 200.  According to the group's website, the phone number listed on the flier is its "national hotline," and is registered in...

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Monday, July 18, 2016

KKK Drops Flyers In Raleigh Neighborhood As Part of Seemingly Coordinated National Campaign

Posted By on Mon, Jul 18, 2016 at 5:37 PM

Warning: some of the links in this post redirect to stories with images of racist material.  According to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s map of active hate groups in the United States, there are eight separate organizations operating under the Ku Klux Klan name in North Carolina. One of them dropped flyers in the Raleigh neighborhood of Oakwood on Sunday, as part of a seemingly coordinated literature campaign throughout the United States.  Oakwood resident Jesse Jones, a lawyer in Harnett County who filed the police report, says that his recording system caught a car stopping in the middle of...

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The Morning Roundup: As the Nation Mourns Again, the Republican Party Proceeds With Nationally Televised Suicide

Posted By on Mon, Jul 18, 2016 at 8:31 AM

Sigh. It bears repeating — again, and again, and again: Congress should have done something long ago about limiting access to military-style assault weapons that are "good" for one thing, and one thing only: killing lots of people — including cops — quickly.  Oh, and the #Trumpence Convention starts today in Cleveland. Let's talk about that. But first: 1. Here's the latest on Sunday's Baton Rouge shooting spree. From the Los Angeles Times: Gavin Eugene Long, the gunman who killed three police officers and wounded three others in Baton Rouge, La., on Sunday, left a vast and angry online trail documenting his interest...

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Friday, July 15, 2016

Inspiring: This Man Became a U.S. Senator Without Reading the Constitution

Posted By on Fri, Jul 15, 2016 at 1:41 PM

U.S. Senator Thom Tillis is tired of being told to do his job, which is remarkable considering he doesn't seem to have any idea of what his job entails.  On Wednesday, Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Mazie Hirono of Hawaii tried to confirm a batch of President Obama's judicial nominees. Luckily, our esteemed Senator from North Carolina heroically stopped them. From the Huffington Post: “I’m not sure what version of the Constitution you’re reading that doesn’t say confirming judges is part of your job in the United States Senate,” Warren said. “Of course confirming judges is part of the...

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This Durham 'Day of Rage' Rumor Is a Bunch of Fearmongering

Posted By on Fri, Jul 15, 2016 at 1:33 PM

There is a rumor going around, stoked by conservative media outlets, that a national "Day of Rage" is planned this evening in thirty-seven American cities, including Durham, in response to the recent police killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. NC Team Trump, for example, is all ginned up about this story, because it seems like an excuse to call the Black Lives Matter movement a terrorist organization. There is a seed of truth here. An internet group (or person, or something) called TheAnonMessage recently posted this call-to-action video to YouTube, announcing a "Day of Rage" on July 15. It has...

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Apodaca Pulls the Ultimate `Dac' Move

Posted By on Fri, Jul 15, 2016 at 12:50 PM

Republican Senate Rules Chairman Tom Apodaca announced Friday that he's resigning from the General Assembly, a few months shy of his retirement. From The News & Observer: Apodaca, a Hendersonville Republican, has said he’s considering taking a job as a lobbyist. Resigning early means he can start the clock on a six-month “cooling off period” required for lawmakers who become lobbyists. The legislature won’t return to Raleigh until January. A lobbyist?! Who'da thunk it? More: Apodaca is one of the state’s most powerful lawmakers, and he announced last year he wouldn’t seek another term. “It has been the honor of...

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