Government

Latest HPU poll shows tight Senate race

October 14, 2014

(High Point Enterprise)

A High Point University poll released Monday shows U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan and N.C. House Speaker Thom Tillis in a dead heat, each with 40% of likely state voters. Libertarian candidate Sean Haugh has 7%, and 13% of voters are undecided or declined to answer. 

Former Charlotte mayor awaits sentencing

October 13, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon will be sentenced Tuesday on corruption charges. Cannon, 47, was arrested March 26 and pleaded guilty in June to accepting bribes totaling $50,500 from a local businessman and undercover agents between January 2013 and February 2014. The maximum sentence is 20 years, though prosecutors promised not to ask for a sentence of more than four to five years  in exchange for Cannon's guilty plea.

Commission receives more than 100,000 public comments on fracking rules

October 13, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The N.C. Mining and Energy Commission has received more than 100,000 public comments on proposed safety rules for hydraulic fracturing. Three hearing officers will review the comments and make recommendations on fracking standards to the full commission on Oct. 30. The state legislature is expected to begin reviewing the rules in January.

NC GOP leaders hire California attorney to fight marriage ruling

October 10, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

House Speaker Thom Tillis and Senate President Phil Berger hired California law professor John Eastman, a conservative supporter of traditional marriage, to defend North Carolina's ban on gay marriage.
Related: U.S. District Judge William Osteen gives legislators until noon Friday to submit their arguments 

US Supreme Court rules against same-day registration, out-of-precinct voting

October 9, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The U.S. Supreme Court blocked an Oct. 1 federal appeals court ruling that reinstated same-day voter registration and out-of-precinct voting in next month's election. The decision upholds 2013 changes to North Carolina's voting law, which Republican legislators say will help prevent voter fraud. 

Senate candidates square off in second debate

October 8, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Gay marriage, national security and unemployment were a few of the topics covered at Tuesday's heated debate between U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan and N.C. House Speaker Thom Tillis. The candidates will face off again Thursday in a third and final debate in Wilmington, the only debate that will include Libertarian candidate Sean Haugh.

Supreme Court decision clears way for gay marriage

October 7, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

State Republican leaders say they will defend a voter-approved ban on gay marriage despite the Supreme Court's refusal on Monday to hear same-sex marriage cases. 
Also: Same-sex marriage ruling could energize voters in Senate race

Elections board questions AFP about voter mailer

October 6, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

After the N.C. Democratic Party filed a complaint alleging voter suppression, the state Board of Elections has asked conservative group Americans for Prosperity to explain how it made so many mistakes in a voter-application mailer. Thousands of the applications included incorrect information about how to submit the forms and an incorrect deadline, while some were addressed to ineligible voters and deceased people.

Readmission rates lead to reduced Medicare reimbursements at some Charlotte hospitals

October 6, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Some Charlotte area hospitals will be penalized for readmitting too many patients within 30 days of their last hospital stay. Now in its its third year, a federal program reduces Medicare payments to hospitals with higher-than-expected readmission rates for heart failure, heart attack, pneumonia, chronic lung problems and elective hip and knee replacements. No Charlotte hospitals received the maximum penalty.

AG Cooper asks Supreme Court to block voting-law changes

October 3, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

With only 22 days left before early voting begins, state Attorney General Roy Cooper said North Carolina does not have enough time to prepare for changes to the voting process and has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block an appeals court ruling that reinstated same-day registration and out-of-precinct balloting.