Dalton fires back at Dellinger

The LG Day at BlueNC Continues.

I just received the following mass email from the Dalton campaign, excerpted:

It appears that the worst aspect of the campaign season has reared its head already. One of my opponents in the Democratic Primary for Lieutenant Governor has spent the last few days attacking me and distorting the truth about my record. As the frontrunner in this race, I guess I should have expected this. But, it’s still sad that politics has come to this.
Perhaps I should just let these attacks go, and dismiss them as the desperate tactics of a candidate who has never created a single job, never provided health care coverage for anyone in this state, and never worked to raise teacher pay or lower class size.

But I'm reaching out to friends like you because it really sticks in my craw when someone misrepresents the work I've done. Hampton is either being deliberately misleading or he lacks a fundamental understanding of how the legislative process works. He's chosen to ignore the work I've done on several important issues, and has cherry-picked votes and distorted them to try to cast me as a bad Democrat. It appears Hampton doesn't understand that sometimes an elected official has to hold firm in order to achieve better legislation. That's what happened on important issues like the death penalty reform and Clean Smokestacks legislation. In the end my resolve helped make those laws better.
I am a proud Democrat, and my voting record reflects that. I am pro-choice and believe we must always protect a woman's life and health and that those decisions must be made between a woman and her doctor. I also feel strongly that we must always honor the letter and the spirit of the Civil Rights Act.
P.S. This is not the first time one of my opponents has resorted to using distortions and misinformation. Unfortunately, it takes financial resources to set the record straight. Please click here to join me in sending a message that we expect better.

I'm willing to hear how he clarifies the votes that Hampton challenged him on, because on the surface they are very damning. But, instead of giving us that clarification, he just chides Hampton. I think we all know what is going on here, the tone of the email is clear - "Silly, YOUNG, Hampton. You're just too YOUNG to understand how things work in Raleigh."


BlueNC, where the LG fun never ends.

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.

You've gotta love the way

he annoints himself "the frontrunner".


Screw boxing gloves. These two have brought sledgehammers.

First Hampton says Dalton isnt a Democrat, then Dalton fires back with language similar to what Romney has been attacking Clinton and Obama with.

I had originally thought all the craziness would be in the Governor's race. But I guess we get to see some hitting here too.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Mr. Dalton is more than cordially invited to take part in

the BlueNC Live phone / blog session if we can pull it off.

It would seem that we have some serious contenders for the title.

North Carolina. Turning the South Blue!

North Carolina. Turning the South Blue!

Litmus Test.

I've always said that I have no litmus test for candidates. However, I now have come up with one with which I am content.

Has the candidate ever voted in any way that supports the death penalty for those who are mentally retarded.

Whatever else I might have heard about Walter Dalton, he is out of contention until I see some proof from him that Dellinger was misrepresenting this position. Actually, innocent until proven guilty, Hamp do you have links to the votes in question?

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.

From the Email version


The final text of the bill as signed by the governor is here if Dalton or any of his supporters would like to defend him.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

That's gonna take some serious 'splainin

Not surprised to see Hoyle in there with a "no" vote as well. Plus these other Democrats. Yup, that's our big tent in action, with plenty of room for folks who vote to execute mentally retarded people.

Dalton (D)
Hoyle (D)
Kerr (D)
Swindell (D)


Doug Berger has only been in the Senate for 2 terms.

That is Phil Berger.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

My bad.

I'll fix it.

(Removed Berger from this 2001 list.)

The reason I looked

Is that Doug Berger is generally very good about these things. He is the only worker's comp. attorney in the Senate, and is amongst the more progressive voices on most topics. So of all the Democrats in the State Senate he might be the least likely to actually vote wrong on something like this.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"


I'd like to know more. Because a quick look at his voting record suggests that he does what almost every other Democrat in the NC Senate does, which is to vote with leadership on a pre-ordained outcome for virtually every issue. Someone once tried to convince me that all that block voting was a sign of good discipline and effective consensus-building by the big dogs. That explanation doesn't sit so well with me. Maybe it's part of some big horse-trading scheme that all the little people never get to know about, in which case it sucks even more.


Because of the party discipline, much of the senate work is done in committee. Sen Berger has been a strong voice on things like the bullying legislation, same day voter registration etc.

I wouldnt say that I agree with all of his votes, but I would say that he is one of the good guys.

For instance do you remember this little thread?

Twenty-two NC Democrats from the House and Senate sent a letter to Attorney General Roy Cooper asking him "to investigate credible allegations that Aero contractors conspired to commit federal crimes and then provided material support to the commission of those crimes on property owned by the state of North Carolina."

Sen Berger was one of the 22. The others from the Senate were Kinnaird, Lucas, Malone and Treasurer Candidate, Janet Cowell.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"


I dont really know that much about his district, but just throwing a dart at the wall it seems like his district is probably somewhere between Brad Miller's and Bob Etheridges. Which is to say, safe for an incumbent Democrat, but also generally conservative. But that could be wrong.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Hey...why aren't you calling?

I need to talk to you. When can I call?

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

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

oh i am

I am recruiting a volunteer to canvass as I write this.

try around 945

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

not the age

It is not the age that will get you..... it is the kids

As the father of two, I know.

"jump in where you can and hang on"
Briscoe Darling to Sheriff Andy

Doug Berger

Doug Berger is good on some issues, but he is a strong supporter of capital punishment. I have heard him refer to himself as a "law-and-order Democrat," which seems to be based on having worked as a prosecutor.

I'll take a shot...

I introduced myself earlier on the other LG thread - I'm new to BlueNC but have worked at the General Assembly in the past and am a Dalton supporter so I thought I'd jump in here.

I applaud you for going to the source, BlueSouth, to check the record, but if you look at the vote you've linked to above, its dated April 23 and is not the final version of the bill that passed. Here's the full vote history.

Be sure to check out the final reading - the "Motion to Concur" - on the version of the bill that came back from the House with some serious changes. It shows Dalton as "aye". Our esteemed Sen. Webster on the other hand...

In my other post, which was a bit too late on the thread for anyone to see, I linked to this Charlotte Observer article that I thought was helpful in detailing some of the policy debates in the LG race, including some of the ones you've mentioned here (clean smokestacks, Dalton being pro-choice, and then the death penalty case).

As I said before, I'm not going to try and hide my biases here, but just want to be helpful.


Is there an easy way to see what the "serious changes" were between the second reading and the motion to concur?

(I'll apologize in advance for pestering you, but having even limited access to a guy/gal who knows the legislative ropes is a sight for sore eyes. Feel free to ignore me, of course.)

Exactly Anglico

what did the Senator oppose in the first bill, and what changed that got his support.

Because right now, all I see is a politician voting against a bill that would ban the execution of the mentally handicapped, and then voting for it when it was obviously going to pass.

"85% of Republicans are Democrats who don't know what's going on." -Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire


There really isn't an easy way. There are a ton of things that can be changed at any given time, and a lot of the debate doesn't make it into the record.

I will say that if you look at Edition 4 and compare it to Edition 5, you'll see a line that says "House Committee Substitute" added at the top. That generally means (and I'm no attorney) that substantive changes have been made beyond the scope of a simple amendment and that much of the meaning of the bill has potentially been changed. As to the particulars with this bill, though, I'm not sure.

My guess is that there was a lot of debate on the legislation between April and July, which is when the committee substitute was passed. Sometimes the Senate will even send legislation over to the House with the expectation that certain provisions will be ironed out -- which may not have been something that Dalton was willing to do, given the serious nature of the bill.


I got a headache from reading all the editions . . . and still came away without a good understanding of the changes. So much to learn!

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I wonder

He was only concurring with the House Version of the Bill; when the rubber hit the road in the Senate, he voted no. I'm going to read the version he voted no to, and see what possible objections he could have had. It looks like a "he voted against it before he voted for it" situation, but I guess we can give him benefit of the doubt until he deigns to explain himself.

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


Sorry, I'm not willing to pour over the line by line bill text for ya... but happy to try to help answer questions anytime.

No worries.

Just to be extra clear, I wasn't asking for that . . . I'm just thrilled to have some ex-insider insight about how things might work behind the magic curtain.


You arent helped

You arent helped by the fat that amendments are not put online. Even though the legislature maintains a superb online registry of votes and bills, one that far surpasses most other states I have had to look at, you still cannot access the actual text of amendments without going to the legislative building.

The legislative library is however always open to "normal" people, and they do an excellent job there of being helpful, and of getting the votes up online as quickly as possible.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Request for anyone in Raleigh

What does Amendment 2 say? That vote was 26-23 with Dalton voting No.

It looks like Amendment 2 was very controversial, and it appears as though there was a change made in the house (which had 8 different amendments) which solved Dalton's objection.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Its hard because

Its hard because I dont have a printer, and Alt-Tab is only so useful. But, I will try.

Edition 4 (Dalton voted No)

(e) The provisions of this section do not preclude the sentencing of a mentally retarded offender to any other sentence authorized by G.S. 14-17 for the crime of murder in the first degree.

(f) In the event the court enters an order pursuant to this section finding that the defendant is mentally retarded, or is found not mentally retarded, the State or the defendant may appeal to the Court of Appeals as of right from the order. The State or the defendant shall have ten days to determine whether to take an appeal from the order finding that the defendant is mentally retarded. The taking of an appeal by the State or the defendant stays the effectiveness of the court's order and any order fixing a date for trial. Within six months of the enactment date of this subsection, the Supreme Court shall adopt rules to ensure that appeals pursuant to this subsection are expeditiously perfected, reviewed, and determined so that pretrial delays are minimized."

Edition 5 (Dalton Yes)

(e) If the court does not find the defendant to be mentally retarded in the pretrial proceeding, upon the introduction of evidence of the defendant's mental retardation during the sentencing hearing, the court shall submit a special issue to the jury as to whether the defendant is mentally retarded as defined in this section. This special issue shall be considered and answered by the jury prior to the consideration of aggravating or mitigating factors and the determination of sentence. If the jury determines the defendant to be mentally retarded, the court shall declare the case noncapital and the defendant shall be sentenced to life imprisonment.

(f) The defendant has the burden of production and persuasion to demonstrate mental retardation to the jury by a preponderance of the evidence.

(g) If the jury determines that the defendant is not mentally retarded as defined by this section, the jury may consider any evidence of mental retardation presented during the sentencing hearing when determining aggravating or mitigating factors and the defendant's sentence.

(h) The provisions of this section do not preclude the sentencing of a mentally retarded offender to any other sentence authorized by G.S. 14-17 for the crime of murder in the first degree."

Edition 4 had the following, which was removed

"§ 15A-2005. Capital offenses; State has discretion as to whether to seek the death penalty.

(a) The State may try a defendant capitally or noncapitally for first degree murder, even if evidence of an aggravating circumstance exists. If a defendant indicted for first degree murder pleads guilty to the offense, the State may choose not to seek the death penalty, even if evidence of an aggravating circumstance exists. The State may accept a guilty plea from a defendant for first degree murder and agree as part of a plea bargain that the State shall not seek the death penalty for the capital offense, even if evidence of an aggravating circumstance exists.

The State may exercise its discretion to try a defendant noncapitally for first degree murder or to accept a guilty plea and not seek the death penalty at any time during the pretrial proceedings, the trial, or the sentencing hearing.

(b) If a defendant is convicted of or pleads guilty to first degree murder when the State elects not to seek the death penalty, then the court shall impose a sentence of life imprisonment without parole."

Edition 5 also added in some stuff about who bears burden of proof and that the defendent must have a lawyer provided if he cant obtain one. I am sure there are some other things I am missing, and good luck to anyone who isnt a lawyer figuring any of this out.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

I'd like to know more about Dalton's stance on

death penalty reform and the clean smokestacks legislation.

Perhaps people who were involved in those issues could let us know if Dalton was standing firm, as he now claims, or not standing so firm, as Dellinger claims.

If he is distorting his record on this, it's very troubling. If Dellinger is distorting the record, that's a problem as well.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Dalton's stance may change

Dalton's stance may change depending on which bills the lobbyists want to push through. (since that is where is campaign funds are coming)

The only thing this email lacks

is his Momma's skirts to hide under.

My lord, Senator, all you've proven here is that Hampton drew blood.

It really sticks in my craw when expeirenced politicos pretend to be insulted when their record is questioned. Hampton was respectful, and certainly never tried to belittle Walter in any way.

And what you get back is an extended whine about how he's been attacked?

This is getting good.

Tell you what, Senator, you justify that freaking budget you pushed through the Senate on groundsa progressive recognizes as legitimate, and I'll eat my hat.

"85% of Republicans are Democrats who don't know what's going on." -Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire

True that...

I think Dalton may have lost my vote. Not with Dellinger's allegations, but with this riposte. It's weak and whiney.

Dellinger's still not impressing me much, but this was still pathetic from Dalton.

"the frontrunner" indeed.

Notice also that Senator Dalton isn't here

While Hampton signed on and discussed his broadside.

"85% of Republicans are Democrats who don't know what's going on." -Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire

what does "better" mean?

Better for whom? What changes did you hold out for? What changes did you personally bring about in these acts?

"85% of Republicans are Democrats who don't know what's going on." -Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire