Be here at 7! Sunday live-blogging with Ed Ridpath

With so much focus on Congressional races and statewide contests, it's easy to lose sight of seats here in North Carolina that matter most: those in the General Assembly. That's why I've invited Ed Ridpath to join us Sunday night (7 pm) for a conversation about his campaign to unseat a special-interest Republican (my words, not Ed's.)

From Ed's website:

Ed Ridpath was born at Fort Bliss Army Hospital in El Paso, Texas in 1960. Ed and his sister were raised by a single working mother in Excelsior, Minnesota, a suburb of Minneapolis. After graduating from High School, Ed had a short career as a radio DJ and then enlisted in the US Navy. Petty Officer First Class Ridpath served as a Nuclear Reactor Operator aboard the submarine USS Sam Rayburn. Ed was honorably discharged after eight years of service in Charleston, SC.

Ed performed government contract work supporting the US Department of Energy at the Savannah River Site in Aiken, SC. He received a Bachelors degree in Computer Information Systems from the University of the State of New York, after ten years of part-time coursework.

Since 1999, Ed has lived and worked from his home in Fuquay Varina for IBM. Ed and Jeanne, his wife of twenty-six years have two children; Veronica, 18; and Ryan, 12.


Comments

and at 8PM: Jim Neal at Pam's House Blend

On Sunday I hope BlueNC-ers will sign up over at the Blend and participate in Jim Neal's first town hall on a national LGBT blog on the same day at 8PM.

I will be doing heavy troll monitoring, as this is a national audience many unfamiliar with NC (or think they know NC). Just the announcement of the live blog has made my trap door open for one individual.

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Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend
www.pamshouseblend.com

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Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend
www.pamshouseblend.com

Fantastic! Thanks for letting us know.

Ye Old Blogosphere is rapidly becoming America's Town Hall. Very great! We'll have Ed only for an hour, so the timing is perfect.

(Of course, most of the mainstream media will be busy watching reruns. It's kind of funny that they don't really work on weekends.)

PS To everyone, please do register over at Pam's place.

Thanks, Pam

I've just signed up. Looking forward to it.

Jim Neal

Great, now I can be blogger and bloggee in one night. See y’all at Pam House ‘round 8.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

I can't wait to chat with Ed

I want to hear how the campaign is going and what he sees the top priorities are for his district and for the state.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

How the campaign is going.

Let’s face it, I had a very early start, but it has paid off. Our campaign is fully stocked, we have a decent amount of money in the bank, we have energized many volunteers and activists (including several here at BlueNC), and we have our plan and organization well laid out.

But I needed this “running start” for a good reason. This is a tough race, and frankly, I am competing with the crush of candidates higher up the ticket. I have to point out that there are only a handful of competitive NC House districts, and 37 is one. And of course, this is one local race with truly statewide impact – taking out the current Republican House leader would be a huge blow to the GOP and rousing victory for NC Democrats.

Priorities for the district are simple: focus on the basics of Roads & Schools. We saw voters in Holly Springs soundly reject pro-growth Republicans and put two moderates on the council, one Democrat and one Independent. Last month in Cary, right next door, we saw exactly the same anti-growth tidal wave wash over. People are concerned about crowded schools, constant student re-assignment, and getting stuck in traffic on roads and bridges they don’t know are really safe.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

School Funding

Any ideas on how we change the school funding woes without continuously forcing county and city councils to raise property taxes?

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Transfer Tax

I have and still support the idea of transfer taxes and impact fees. But we have lots of work to do to get organized and face down the opposition, educate the voters, and engage the public. It may take more pain, such as rising property taxes or even more crowded schools to realize that we have been giving real estate brokers a free ride.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

I'm glad to hear the positive news

I know you have to fight those in the upticket races for money and volunteers.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

For money certainly but volunteers

can have influence for more than one candidate. If candidates coordinate their efforts when their districts/interests overlap- "my people will drop off your literature and your folks drop off mine.". Or campaigns can pool efforts/manpower on a given day in an area of mutual interest.

Can't hurt for campaigns to talk about it.

Person County Democrats

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

Helping other candidates

Yes, exactly. Our campaign has always supported other Democrats - we create bundles with their lit, invite them to participate in our canvasses, and try to hold combined phone banks. In fact, we won a county commissioner seat, and several judgeships that were actively involved with our campaign's volunteer events. There is strength in numbers.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

you deserve the credit, and tell us more

I can't tell you how much I appreciate and respect you, Ed.

there are only a handful of competitive NC House districts, and 37 is one.

I bet it is now, but before you ran last time, I think folks saw 37 as an unattainable seat in a solidly red district. I'll defer to your knowledge of the district, but -- credit where credit is due -- if it's considered competitive, I think YOU made it so. Thank you.

I'd like to hear more about your well laid-out plan and organization. Can you go deeper w/o compromising the campaign?

All my best to you!

Feel like you're spinning your wheels?
Get some Traction... turning energy into progressive movement

NC House 37 Competitive

Just got recent numbers, and this district continues to move Democratic, even over just 2 years. I have been told that our campaign did move the dial quite a bit, boots on the ground make a difference.

As far as our plan and organization, I can tell you that we applied many lessons learned fro 2006, both good and bad. I can give you a few examples.

In 2006, we thought we could divide and conquer in staffing - we broke out many small positions and areas of responsibility, almost like a congressional campaign, but with volunteers. We ended up with some confusion, quite a bit of extra effort, and volunteer burnout and turnover at critical stages of the campaign. This time around, we have a very small, core staff that includes a mix of paid, intern, and volunteer. We are not fully staffing up until early next year, and have run the 2007 effort (mostly fund raising events and message/planning) with an ad-hoc group of supporters.

Another area is a much better fund raising plan. In 2006, we had many small events, too frequently. Towards the end, we were having so many, attendance was very poor. This time we have larger events and more time between them - it is more efficient, I can spend more time on the phone getting sponsors, and the events are much more fun and better attended.

Thanks for chiming in - and let me know how I can help Traction engage.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

I got this up early because I have to get dinner ready

since my wonderful wife is out of town. I'll be back on by 7 for sure, but here's the thread for the eager beavers who wan to get at the head of the line.

Welcome Ed! Thank you so much for joining us tonight.

Present and Accounted for!

Thanks to Anglico and Pam for the great introduction. I have to admit, I have been looking forward to logging in and starting up the conversation all day (ok all week!) First step, answering the backlog of questions already here!

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

No way you'll catch up

Just sayin'.

:)

What pushed you?

I'm always curious about what motivates an otherwise sane person to jump into the frenzy of politics. Can you tell us what originally moved you to action?

Sense of Duty

In 2004, I had a choice between a Libertarian and a Republican for the NC House. There was no Democrat running, and as an Independent who had voted Democratic for the most part since living in the Carolina's I was concerned. Combine that with the re-election of Bush and Burr, and you have more than enough reason for someone who loves this country to get going.

I joined the Democratic Party and recruited like crazy - ended up everyone I talked to recruited me.

Much like my military enlistment, this is performing a duty to my country and community, and sacrificing for something much greater than myself.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

You may not want to name names . . .

but who among the Democratic leadership has been especially supportive of your candidacy? We should know who to thank (and cultivate!).

Legislative Supporters

The members of the Wake County Delegation and the well-known progressive members of the NC House (and Senate) across the state have been incredible. But until the short session is adjourned next year, don't expect anyone of them step forward in a big way (but they are certainly welcome to).

I also have to point out the great support by the NC House Caucus and the local Wake County Democratic Party. We are lucky to have such powerful and expert party organizations here.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Veteran’s Day

I am very proud of my service in the US Navy and I am grateful that we have a day to recognize all of us who have served – I am humbled by the company of fellow veterans, and will continue in North Carolina’s tradition of being a military and veteran friendly state.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

How many

How many other legislators have your experience? How do you think that your experience would be useful in finding the proper line between ensureing we are able to compete in a global, technology driven economy and still make sure we dont sell our souls to faceless corporations at the same time with bad incentive deals?

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Main Street Democrat

Unfortunately, I think there are very few legislators that have my type of business background.

For one thing, I am your average RTP professional, and I know what skills are needed in my co-workers to get our jobs done. I also work with our new business - helping customers who are looking to have IBM take over all or part of their data center. That brings me face-to-face with the global resourcing, skills, and other drivers for keeping work here in the US or sending technology jobs overseas.

I have always said that what we need is for our corporations to have the same sense of community and being part of the social contract as we expect of our citizens. In many cases, even those businesses understand that takes good laws and fairly applied regulations to work.

AS far as incentive, I am no fan of them, but can see where North Carolina cannot unilaterally disarm in the battle for jobs. I favor improving education, infrastructure (um, Roads & Schools, back on message) and most of all Health Care - small business especially is truly at a disadvantage by having to be in the health insurance business for their employees. Health care is a competitive business issue as well as a human rights issue

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Great response

I think that the only "incentives" we need to be providing are ones that will help no matter which company moves here and will be useful even if those companies leave. Universal Health Care would go a long way to easing the burden on small businesses that form the bulk of our economy, and it would probably encourage more home grown entrepenuers, who wont leave at the sight of the newest tax package or free trade deal.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

unilaterally disarm

I like how you put that. As some point or another the incentives thing is going to have to be dealt with a federal level.

There's a great book on the subject, The Great American Jobs Scam

- - - - -
Thomas Jefferson said you always get the rulers you deserve.

I've been doing some research on Stam the Scam

and found the following:

* Tried to fast track Death Penalty
* Tried to make 1898 Wilmington riot apology include white republicans
* Led GOP in voting against 1898 Wilmington apology
* Called pedophilia a sexual orientation
* In a debate on anti-school violence, Scam actually promoted violence by calling kid who punched another kid a hero
* Did not support "Safe Surrender" education which would save newborn babies lives.

I'm sure there are many other examples of creepiness . . . but when you look at all of them, which are most out of touch with the people you've met in the district. It seems like he's on some kind of crusade instead of simply doing his dang job.

Dang, Jerimee...you've been busy



Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Looking forward to GA without Stam

I am really looking forward to the 2009 session of the NC General Assembly without Stam as minority leader in the House.

Good Luck, Ed.

John Shaw

Campaign

A political campaign is saying nice things about yourself and, um, not so nice things about your opponent.

I try to be respectful of the person and only address the bad behavior: votes, policy statements, etc. For me, this is not a personal campaign, I do respect Rep. Stam and like to point out that in 2006 of the approx. 65,000 eligible to run for NC House 37, only 2 chose to step forward: myself and Paul "Skip" Stam.

Now that we shook hands, I think I heard the bell ring....

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Skip Skam

You be the good cop, we'll take care of all the back-alley stuff.

Seriously, I really respect how you comport yourself and I'm glad to see you taking the high road. Especially when your opponent consistently acts in ways designed to deny equality and liberty. He is a bigot, pure and simple.

Hyperbole

Skip Stam isnt a bigot....

....He just hates everyone who isnt a white, christian, straight male.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

like many of the top republicans

like a 2 year old with a wet diaper if i remember correctly.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Told ya

we'd take care of all that back-alley stuff.

Seriously, though, you nailed it. If one doesn't happen to be a white, straight, Republican Christian man, Stam seems to think the US Constitution doesn't apply.

In the GA

I didn't watch the House sessions as much as others. I spent more time in committee meetings and meeting with individuals. But when I did see Stam in action on the floor, he comported himself as well as anyone. It is just how he voted.

I do remember one of his statements; he just repeated the theme on WRAL-TV Saturday night. He was concerned that the increase in the budget was more than the total of inflation and increase in population--in other words, the spending per person, inflation adjusted, was increasing. After that remark on the floor, I asked him (while he was walking back to his office) about the need to increase some spending. For example, decreasing class size and the fact that decreasing the dropout rate results in a larger number of students per capita. His reply was that those were desires, not needs.

Decreasing dropout rates is just a desire and not worthy of funding???

Ideology trumps reality

I've seen this again and again.

Guys like Stam sit silent in the face of a billion dollars a month being flushed in Iraq . . . but can't be bothered with poverty here at home.

Dropouts

Our government needs to be flexible in meeting the needs of all it's citizens. A focus on some mechanical tax formula that does not consider the human costs, the accelerating nature of globalization and voter expectations is instantly doomed to failure.

We need to address the dropout issue and when we scrape the surface, we see poverty right underneath. We need to invest in these kids early, we need to provide them extra support and motivation throughout their school careers, and give them a goal - a good job - at the end of the hard road we are asking them to walk.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Finally, something I'm qualified for:

we'll take care of all the back-alley stuff.

:)

So where does the dirt go? You want it here, or over there?

What can we do to help?

I know that you need volunteers on the ground to knock doors and reach the voters, but if folks are unable to come to one of the many canvass you've scheduled, how can they otherwise help?

What sorts of things can someone who is in Asheville do to help you get elected?

- - - - -
Thomas Jefferson said you always get the rulers you deserve.

State-wide help

Thanks for the opening...

Seriously, like any campaign, we need people's time, talent, and treasure.

Time: I will have only one paid staffer, and maybe an intern or two, so the rest of the "staff" on the campaign is pure volunteer labor. And in the canvassing area I have set the bar high: 25,000 voters contacted at their door. At an average of 25 voters per hour, that is 1000 person hours, or about 10 volunteers for 2 hours every weekend until the election. That is either 500 people 1 time or the same 10 people for the full year. I expect we will make it on hundrreds of volunteers who do repeat performances.

Talent: If you can't be close, you can do research, help with message, wrtie letters, help with data entry, and I expect that we may have a virtual phone bank working early next year(?).

Treasure: Please, contribute whatever you can afford and please do it right now: http://edridpath.com/contribute

You can also throw a house party, I love to visit Asheville!

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

(cell) phone banking on weekends using "unlimited

minutes" is something that can be done for a candidate when the volunteer is not geographically close to the district in question.

Care must be taken with the script to avoid the appearance of "outside influence" which can be a negative.

Still, 25 calls a week per volunteer to voters that are not likely to be reached by the foot soldiers can add up.

Person County Democrats

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

i'm late and just catching up. Great stuff so far.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

Personally, Ed,

I've appreciated the series you've put together on how to run. It's been useful in attracting potential candidates in our area. I wish you all the best.


Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Candidate Blog Series

Oh, that was a joy to do - and you can thank BlueSouth for the prod. Thank you for your kind words.

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Ahem.

When I spoke with Ed about this session, I told him it would take no more than an hour . . . and that hour is almost up. So just in case the good candidate has other important matters to attend to, I want to formally thank him for being with us.

Ed, you know you're always welcome here.

I hope you'll all join me in thanking Mr. Ridpath for his generosity and commitment. Thank you, Ed. It's a pleasure to have you among us.

Signing off and heading to Pam's

I'll be multitasking for the next hour if anyone wants to post more questions.

Thanks to everyone for your participation and support!

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

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Ed Ridpath
www.EdRidpath.com

Thank you, Ed!

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