Politics with a side of pork

North Carolina Republican candidates gather for barbecue at Elon Law

by Andie Diemer
Sept. 28, 2008

Friday night the Elon Law Republicans hosted “Pork and Politics,” where the community was invited to eat Hursey’s Bar-B-Q, listen to local and state Republican North Carolinian candidates and watch the first presidential debate live.

“It can be hard for local candidates to have a forum to speak about why they are running and how they would contribute,” Summer Nettleman, Elon Law student and event coordinator, said. “We wanted to be able to bring local Republicans together.”

Each candidate addressed the audience on why he or she should be elected. Fourteen candidates were represented.

Laura Wiley for N.C. House of Representatives:
Wiley is up for re-election for District 61 in the N.C. General Assembly House. During her time there she helped pass a child predator act and helped rewrite, redefine and increase penalties for stalking.

This November, she is hoping for a republican house majority.

“We have a lot left to do,” Wiley said. “We’ve got to work together. We don’t win elections by ourselves, we win them by your hard work.”

John Blust for N.C. House of Representatives:
Representing District 62, Blust is running for re-election. He wants new ethical standards to be implemented this time around.

“Today we have our terrorism, we have our war on terrorism but our biggest challenges are from within,” he said. “For you people going into law, remember that the fundamental reason for the law is something called justice.”

Hugh Webster for 13th District Representative:
After spending 12 years in the North Carolina Senate, Webster is still firm in his platform.

“I support real tax reform, folks,” he said. “And I support, more than anything else, integrity in government.”

He is also an advocate for offshore drilling and cited a price drop when President George W. Bush opened up drilling recently.

“I care how you vote,” he said. “Anybody that knows me knows what I stand for.”

Elizabeth Dole for Senator:
Bill Fields spoke on behalf of Sen. Elizabeth Dole, who is running for re-election. He said as Americans, North Carolinians are at war on the borders, with the democrats and the energy crisis.

“We’re also at war in our pocketbooks,” Fields said. “It’s the Democrats who want a government that’s all intrusive.”

He said Dole promises to provide less government and fewer taxes.

“If it’s war that the Democrats want,” he said, “it’s war they’ll get.”

John Odom for N.C. Insurance Commissioner:

Odom has a business background but said he saw the need for a new commissioner in Raleigh.

He said he plans to streamline the departments, which employ 492 workers.

“[This will] make it easier for you as a consumer so that everybody in the state of North Carolina has a low rate and is taken care of,” he said.

Eddie Southern for Guilford County Commissioner:
Southern plans to work on education and on bringing down the tax rate.

“We [have to] get our children educated and work on the fact that we have gang and violence problems in Guilford County,” Southern said. “We [have to] work to get some republicans that have backbone in the government.”

He also wants to bring safety back to the neighborhoods.

“What I want to do is work to make our lives better,” he said.

Pat McCrory for Governor:
Penn Broyhill acted as a stand-in speaker for Pat McCrory, who is currently the mayor of Charlotte.

“We are in a tough, tight race,” Broyhill said. “We’re fighting a political machine that can control Raleigh.”

He said McCrory wants to clean up Raleigh and the state as whole.

In December of 2007, McCrory became the only Charlotte mayor in history to be elcted to a seventh term. He was originally elected in 1995.

McCrory was raised in Guilford County and graduated from Catawba College in 1985.

Betty Brown for District Court Judge:
With more than 24 years of experience in the court system, Brown said she will continue to treat everyone who appears before her with dignity and respect.

“I wanted to take that experience, knowledge, skills and wisdom that I’ve learned over the years and take it to the court bench so I could continue to serve the citizens of Guilford County,” Brown said. “I will be fair, impartial and thorough in my deliberations.”

Bob Edmunds for N.C. Supreme Court:
Running for his second term, Edmunds said the Supreme Court is a court that does affect everyone, even students.

“One thing I hope, above all else is that the voters will compare their candidates,” he said.

He said he feels he is the highest-qualified candidate, since he is the only one that has been a judge, a partner in a law firm and is certified in law.

Edmunds was elected to the Supreme Court for his first term in 2000. He has also served on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and as a U.S. federal prosecutor.

Robert Enochs for District Court Judge:
Enochs has a background in accounting and has practiced criminal defense and domestic and civil law.
He also worked as the Guilford County Assistant District Attorney for 13 years.

“I’ve appeared in district court rooms on both sides of the aisle, which gives me unique sight,” he said. “Experience matters.”

Susan Bray for District 18 Judge:
Up for re-election, Bray said she was happy to be out in the community, talking about her campaign.

“We who are judges and judicial candidates appreciate the opportunity to meet voters because we get left out of a lot of forums,” Bray said. “I really would like to win it.”

Dan Barrett for N.C. Court of Appeals:
During his race for governor, Barrett physically walked across North Carolina.

Five pairs of shoes, 582 miles, 20 pounds and an unsuccessful bid for governor later, he is now running for the Court of Appeals.

“My judicial philosophy is conservative. That means I will not legislate from the bench, I will be tough on crime and I will be independent, fair and impartial,” he said. “I will do the job you sent me to do.”

Jim Rumley for House District 59:
Rumley said he is asking the community to vote for him so he can “unseat one of the most ineffective legislators in the House today.”

Questioning the ethics and integrity of his opponent Maggie Jeffus, Rumley said he will help North Carolina in a new way.

“I’m going to do what’s right,” Rumley said. “We’re going to do the right things when I get in the house.”

Jewel Ann Farlow for N.C. Court of Appeals:
Farlow, who has practiced law for more than 20 years and worked on civil and criminal cases, said it’s important to elect a practitioner like herself.

“I bring 20 years of practical, real-life experience to the bench,” she said. “I want to make a difference to the people and to the state of North Carolina.”

She pledged to be a full-time judge and not hold to any special interest groups or lobbyists.

“I believe that the law should be applied fairly and impartially. I will make my decision based upon the law,” Farlow said. “If elected I will be working for the people of the state of North Carolina every day of the week.”

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