Interview with House Speaker Thom Tillis

January 29th, 2011 by NC Tea Party Staff Categories: Education, Elections, Hot Topics, House Session 2011-2012, Reform, Regulations, State, Taxes No Responses
Interview with House Speaker Thom Tillis

RALEIGH — Newly elected Republican House Speaker Thom Tillis of Cornelius sat down with Carolina Journal reporters on Tuesday for a wide-ranging interview on the 2011-2012 legislative session. Excerpts from the interview are below:

On cooperation between the House and Senate on budgeting:

On when the session will wrap up:

On how the first week will pan out legislatively:

On legalizing video poker and having the government run it:

On eliminating the charter school cap:

On reducing the number of government-run boards and commissions:

On addressing underfunding of the state pension system:

On abortion-related bills:

On a marriage amendment:

On cooperation between the House and Senate on budgeting: “We are inviting the Senate to be actively engaged in all of our deliberations. We think that by doing that we can minimize the amount of time that will be required once the Senate ultimately gets [the budget], and virtually eliminate the need for conference.”

On when the session will wrap up:
“I was told as a speaker you need to be careful and not stake yourself out. There are a lot of things I’m going to stake myself out on, and one of them is that we need to get out of here sooner. We’re starting a month earlier than we normally have, so as far as I’m concerned we’ve gained a month just by organizing as quickly and starting … We want to get done and get out of here.”

On how the first week will pan out legislatively: “We have a 100-day agenda. We intend to fulfill the promises that were made in that 100-day agenda. Now, whether that is legislation that is filed and moved over the next two weeks, or begins to move in the 90th day of that agenda, with the goal of getting it introduced and moved, we’ll work that out as our legislative agenda takes shape, as we get a real understanding for what we need to do with the budget, what we need to do with redistricting, the capacity that we have to move the other bills and in what sequence. We’ve had people come out there and say, ‘You ran on jobs and the economy and redistricting, and now you’re going and talking about another agenda item.’ Although I want to be lean, the expectation that we would only pass two bills this cycle is probably not right. We will pass several hundred bills, and there will be far fewer introduced than in past sessions.”

On legalizing video poker and having the government run it: “We’ve got to take a look at it. We have a number of members in our caucus that are uncomfortable with it. We have a fair number of members who think that this is at least on the fringe of the whole idea of limited government and free market principles. So we’re going to have to have those very valid arguments weighed in the caucus and then in the committee process.”

On eliminating the charter school cap: “We will send a very clear message that we believe public charter schools are an important part of the options we provide families to get our kids educated, and to be in combination with continuing to make progress on our traditional public schools.”

On reducing the number of government-run boards and commissions: “I think that it is wise to reduce the number of boards and commissions, and it is intuitively obvious that we have too many of them. We’ve just grown. Some of them have a difficult time getting members, I understand … I haven’t seen the governor’s proposal. We applaud her for the thought process. But if we see boards and commissions that are more likely to promote free enterprise, business-friendly policy, we’ll have to take a look at that, because we may see that there are suggested for elimination that may have a real value.”

On addressing underfunding of the state pension system: “It’s part of our overall fiscal strategy. It is just bad management to leave that out there and to not fund it. The other question is, long term, how do we manage those decisions? To what extent do we have to look at alternatives to the current pension system? We’ll have people look at that.”

On abortion-related bills: “We have members in our caucus who have very strong feelings about those bills. We’re going to look at them and give them serious consideration. Again, it all has to be in balance … Those sorts of bills that we believe, first, will be of value to the expectant mother, and may also save a few lives, I don’t think that’s limiting abortion. We can’t, by law, limit abortions. What we can do is provide expectant mothers additional information that may cause them to exercise a choice that is beyond the only choice some people want or expect a mother to have.”

On a marriage amendment: “The marriage amendment is something else we’re looking at. We’re conferring with the Senate. It will be a product of our caucus, and I have encouraged all of our members to sit down and talk about our legislative agenda, make recommendations. You’ll see those recommendations come out over the next several weeks.”

David N. Bass is an associate editor of Carolina Journal. Find him on Twitter and Facebook.
Article originally posted January 28, 2011 on Carolina Journal.

Connect with House Speaker Tillis on Facebook, and Twitter

NC TEA Party takes no credit whatsoever for the writing of this article.

Foxx Cracks Down On Abusive Political Robo-Calls

January 29th, 2011 by WendyW Categories: Elections, Hot Topics, US NC Congress Watch No Responses
Foxx Cracks Down On Abusive Political Robo-Calls

If there was one complaint I had when visiting people in my get out the vote efforts in this past election cycle, it was “Yes, I know there’s an election. [Candidate #1] called me last night. [Candidate #2] called me the day before. [Group X] has called me twice already. How do these people get my number?!“. I saw a number of complaints on Facebook, even! My father got great amusement at these callers expense, especially the Democrat Voter Identification Survey he took when he informed them that he was voting a straight Republican ticket for the first time in his life (he’s a registered Democrat who has voted Republican in most elections for over 30 years). Not everyone was amused as my dad, though.

Thanks to Representative Virginia Foxx, next election cycle citizens might not have to deal with being bombarded by calls from candidates and groups. Issued on her website is the following press release:

bill to allow citizens to opt-out of political robo-calls

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Virginia Foxx today announced that she introduced legislation to crack down on abusive political robo-calls. Her bill, the Robo Calls Off Phones Act (H.R. 116), allows anyone who signs up for the federal government’s existing “Do Not Call” list to opt out of political robo-calls. Currently, political robo-calls are exempt from compliance with the federal “Do Not Call” list. Foxx does not do political robo-calls.

“Every campaign season, like clockwork, voters are bombarded with an endless stream of political robo-calls,” Foxx said. “There is little voters can do to stop this invasion of their homes, which often happens during dinner time or even late at night. My bill fixes this problem by allowing anyone to opt out of these calls by simply signing up for the federal government’s ‘Do Not Call’ list.”

Under Foxx’s legislation anyone who wishes do opt out political robo-calls need only sign up for the federal “Do Not Call” list, which currently applies to most telemarketing. Political robo-calls are exempt from the “Do Not Call” list and this bill closes that loophole.

“Americans hate it when politicians make special rules for themselves, and political robo-calls are a perfect example, Foxx said. “Citizens should be allowed to stop automated political calls from coming to them just as they can stop telemarketing calls. Closing this loophole is a matter of fairness and will help bring a much needed dose of peace and quiet to North Carolina homes during campaign season.”

Anyone who wishes to continue to receive automated political calls will still be able to receive them. Foxx’s legislation strictly applies to unsolicited, political robo-calls where a live person is not available to speak with the individual answering the phone.


Did you get bombarded with phone calls this past election cycle?

— Wendy
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Obama 2.0: The Reinvention Begins

January 18th, 2011 by NC Tea Party Staff Categories: around the nation, Elections, Hot Topics No Responses
Obama 2.0: The Reinvention Begins

The year 2012 looms large in the mind of Barack Obama.  After two years of decline in the number of those who view his policies, his performance, and his personality favorably, Barack Obama has begun yet another process of reinvention on the road to reelection.

Will he succeed in bamboozling voters once again?

The policy shifts following the November shellacking the Democrats received from voters are clear.

Foremost among these shifts to the center is the tax deal reached with the Republicans.  There will be others to come, as renewed attention is devoted to transforming the tax code itself to make it simpler and fairer.  There will be more feints to the center.

Barack Obama will adapt even more, altering his image so he can again appeal to the great center of American voters: the jackpot that every candidate must win to enter the White House.  Will Obama be able to connect with voters, as every politician must, on a personal level?

Conservatives should not count Obama out yet.  He may be cold-blooded, but he is a chameleon who can change the way people perceive him.

Indeed, he has already begun to do so.  The premiere of Obama 2.0 took place in Tucson, where his speech was warmly received and a new, more emotional Obama was on display (the voicecracking brings to mind the lip-chewing of a thoughtful Bill Clinton).  And the road show has only just commenced.

A clue to Obama’s ability and willingness to adapt can be found in the words of his book Dreams from My Father.  There he mentioned only one book, Malcolm X’s autobiography, and wrote that Malcolm X’s “repeated acts of self-creation spoke to me.”  Therein lies the clue to Obama’s plan to rebrand his own image.  A man who can fake a Southern accent, the story of how his father came to America, and the story of his parents’ being inspired by the Civil Rights march in Selma to conceive him has no problem morphing for political purposes.

We are about to watch the extreme makeover of Barack Obama in real time.

read full article …

RNC Vote on Friday

January 13th, 2011 by WendyW Categories: Elections, Hot Topics No Responses

FreedomWorks will be covering the Republican National Committee’s Chairman vote on Friday to ensure the Tea Party movement makes its voice heard in this crucial process.

Five candidates remain in the race, including past RNC Chairman Michael Steele, Wisconsin GOP Chairman Reince Priebus, Ambassador Ann Wagner, former Michigan GOP Chairman Saul Anuzis and veteran GOP strategist Maria Cino.

You can view our RNC Chairman candidate debate from December to see some of the candidates, and vote for who you would like to become the next chairman.


January 31st Is The Deadline: will you make it?
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NCGA Priorities: Election Reform

November 12th, 2010 by Morphius Categories: Elections, Hot Topics, Reform No Responses

On November 2, 2010, the Republican party gained control of the North Carolina General Assembly for the first time since 1898… 112 years! I’ve had the opportunity to get to know a number of the people that will be representing us in this new General Assembly and am hopeful that NC will turn back towards freedom and prosperity. Clearly, the number one priority of this new General Assembly will be to rein in the spending of state government and address the growing budget deficit. Aside from this first priority, there are a number of priorities that I would like to encourage the next General Assembly to consider:

Election reform

It seems like it has become normal to expect voting problems and election fraud during each election. If we are to be a self-governing people, as our founders intended, then we must do everything we can to insure the integrity of the election process.

  • Require a photo ID to vote

The easiest and most important step that can be taken to insure that every person who votes is legally allowed to vote, to insure that each voter lives in the precinct that they claim and to insure that each voter votes only once is to require that each person show a photo ID in order to vote. I worked as a poll observer this year and watched over and over again as people willingly volunteered to show their driver’s license when they signed in to vote. It was very apparent to me that people expect that they should prove who they are in order to vote. The only ones that should be concerned with producing an ID are those who are trying to take advantage of our election process.

The new General Assembly should require that everyone that votes show a photo ID to prove their identity.

  • All ballots should list the party affiliation of all candidates

Currently, candidates for the NC state judiciary and candidates for school board are listed on our ballots without listing the candidates party affiliation. These offices have been referred to as non-partisan offices. That is a contradiction. Every candidate running for any office has a party affiliation. A person’s party affiliation tells us something about the person’s beliefs, philosophy and worldview. Previous General Assemblys removed the candidates party affiliation from the ballot in an attempt to make liberal candidates for office more palatable to voters by hiding their party affiliation.

The new General Assembly should require that every candidate for any office be listed on the ballot with their party affiliation.

  • Election: Straight party voting should be eliminated

Our current ballots allow a person to vote for all the candidates that are running in a particular party with one “click”. This allows a person to vote without considering the people who are actually listed on the ballot. Even if a voter votes only for the candidates of a certain party, every voter should be required to vote for the individual people and not for specific parties.

The new General Assembly should remove straight party ticket voting from all future ballots.


Scott Cumbie (Facebook)