WHOM do you support for Lt. Governor, and why?

As I've written recently, I am having trouble getting excited by the Gubernatorial election, so I'm staying as neutral as possible. I expect to do the same thing with the Lt. Governor's race, however, it's possible I'll jump on someone's ship should the right pitch be made. So, this is your chance, not just to pitch to me, but to the entire BlueNC community.

Who do you support?


What difference do you see your favorite candidate making in the future of North Carolina as Lt. Governor?

The candidates below the fold.

Dan Besse

Dan was born and grew up in Hickory, a small piedmont city whose growth and development moved it from a late nineteenth-century trading center on the Western North Carolina Railroad to a thriving twentieth-century manufacturing center for furniture, hosiery, and textiles.

He graduated from Hickory High in 1973, and then continued his education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He received his undergraduate degree in 1977 and his law degree in 1980.

While studying at the university he met his future wife, Kay House, who is a native of Marion in the foothills of Western Central North Carolina.

After a stay in Greensboro, Dan and Kay spent a decade working in New Bern and Lumberton in the eastern part of the state. In 1993, they returned west to Winston-Salem, which they have made their home ever since.

Walter Dalton

Growing up in Rutherford County, Walter was a leader. A popular student who did well in school, he quarterbacked his high school football team. His good grades and leadership qualities led him to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After receiving a degree in Business Administration, Walter went to work in banking. He later returned to Chapel Hill to earn a law degree.

In 1971, Walter married his high school sweetheart, Lucille. Wedding photo Thirty-five years and two children later, they are still an inseparable partnership. Like their parents before them, Walter and Lucille raised their children, Brian and Elizabeth, in Rutherford County.

Walter built a successful law practice and, following the example set by his father, he and Lucille became deeply involved in their community. He became lay speaker in the Methodist church, a Cub Scout leader and served as board chair of the local community college. Lucille, a former teacher, led the family into politics when she won a seat on the school board. In 1998 she was named North Carolina's school board member of the year, winning the Raleigh Dingman award.

Hamp Dellinger (BTW, his site is much, much improved)

Hampton went from North Carolina's public schools to a public university and then to Yale Law School. In top posts in the Governor's Office (Chief Legal Counsel) and the Department of Justice (Deputy Attorney General and Special Counsel), Hampton promoted public safety, public health and public integrity. He has also challenged governmental decisions that waste taxpayers’ money or imperil the clean air, safe water, and scenic beauty that is every North Carolinian’s birthright.
Hampton and his wife, Jolynn, were married in Asheville in 1994. They now live in Durham with their two children, Jackson and Austen Grace.

For generations, the Dellinger family has been devoted to North Carolina and service to others.

Pat Smathers (I was tempted to use this photo, shame on you Pat for not spilling the beans about Liddy showing up in North Carolina, at least once!)

When devastating hurricane floods struck his hometown in 2004, Mayor Pat Smathers had two options: Rebuild or build better.

Smathers, a problem solving Democrat, chose the latter, partnering with fellow community leaders and state government to strengthen the mountain town his family has called home for eight generations.

As mayor, school board attorney and former champion high school and college athlete, Smathers has learned what small towns expect of their leaders: A dedication to success. A willingness to work hard. And the resourcefulness to create solutions that work for everyone.

“It’s time to fulfill those expectations at the state level,” says Smathers, a husband, father of two and retired lieutenant colonel in the National Guard. “North Carolinians deserve a leader who will meet our state’s challenges with openness, optimism and invested innovations. As lieutenant governor, I will honor those hometown values we all share.”

I believe that is all the declared candidates, right?

Tell me who you like and why, please.


I'm having trouble getting

I'm having trouble getting excited about any of the state races. Not sure why. Maybe it's just to early or maybe I'm focused on others.

I've been thinking about it, and I think it is the Republicans

They don't have any candidates that really seem viable. Maybe after the primary when we'll have one person to aim our attacks at it will be more interesting.

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.

That's something I hadn't

That's something I hadn't considered. You could be right.


Wow! I just finished a post about Dan Besse...I suppose it would be tacky to copy/paste it here, so please if you would just navigate over to it, thanks.

Advocate. Mediator. 25 years of solid service in the cause of clean air and water, women's and children's health and legal parity for the underprivileged. Simply the most informed candidate in the race on progressive issues and posessor of the mightiest skill set for achieving those goals through level-headed, hard-bore, solid and respectful reasoning and compromise. One of the smartest public servants the state has produced in a generation, Dan Besse may be the sort of thoughtful man who usually thinks better about entering the melee of politics but just can't see a better way to effect change.

Those of us who have benefited from his service (that's all of us, folks) are glad that he has.

That is good timing on your part!

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.

I really like Dellinger.

I'm originally from Fayetteville and have been living in the Triangle for the last 5-6 years. Long-time lurker and thought I'd share my perspective on this race.

Last spring, I had the opportunity to go to an event for Hampton Dellinger featuring a performance by Branford Marsalis. The music was brilliant and bittersweet, and as the concert ended I experienced one of those rare moments where everyone feels they’re part of something special.

The last tone lingered, and everyone applauded. Wade Smith stood up and said to Mr. Marsalis, “It’s a magical thing that you’ve done. In a world that can contain that kind of music, you know that we can do better.” It was on par with Carville’s “We changed the way campaigns were run” speech in “The War Room”.

Hampton is the kind of candidate for forward-looking voters who truly believe that in North Carolina we can always do better. He brings a fresh perspective amplified by his broad professional experience. He is already working to create a better North Carolina. Hampton has been an active voice on education, the environment, and improving the welfare of seniors.

I had been impressed with Hampton’s ability to connect with young voters, and he has really built a reputation for valuing the input of college Democrats and young professionals. (I'm a graduate student myself.) But at the campaign event, I realized that it’s not just young people that he has that kind of relationship with. His supporters looked like North Carolina. There were young people and seniors, women and men, rural and urban community leaders from around the state, and people of diverse ethnicities. And they aren’t just on the sidelines – Hampton has created a grassroots campaign that engages the broad cross-section of North Carolinians.


...an indication of what I think is that I started writing a response and its up to about 500 words.

I will just say that I support Pat Smathers because of him, his family, his message, his record and his ideas. I like Dan Besse, and I hope he ends up getting a bigger voice at some point in this state. I wont be supporting Dalton at all. As one of the leading voices in the State Senate he has been horrible on economic matters recently, choosing business over people time and again.

Besides the issues I think personalities matter. Earlier this year I worked as an usher at the JJ Dinner. As part of that I was at the door taking tickets from everyone. On the way in to the room some people were very kind and some ignored me. Pat and Dan made a concerted effort to say hello to me. Joe Hackney, having to give a speech just 3 minutes after he walked into the room, said hello and introduced himself. I dont remember what Hampton did, but Dalton just walked right past me as if I did not exist.

How someone treats staff is an indication of a lot of things. It was obvious that Hackney cares about the little people. It was obvious that Dalton does not.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Dan Besse for Lt Gov

Having met and heard from all the candidates (except Sen. Dalton, but I got to watch him in the NC Senate), I think Councilman Besse is a true progressive voice for North Carolina.

Now, I'm probably more of a "conservative" Democrat than most people on here, but what impresses me about Dan is that he is able to talk progressively in a "pragmatic" sense. He's not just full of pie-in-the-sky ideas and cliches, but can really work to get things accomplished. I don't like going into "us" vs. "them" mentality, but I think it is fair to say that he is an outsider who would shake things up in Raleigh and in the state. He's traveled across the state and understands the issues of all of us.

He reminds me a little of Robert Kennedy by his early legal work with lower income individuals in the eastern part of the state. And he continues to be a leader in Winston-Salem on issues of the environment, city planning, and how we should treat all of our citizens. He's also very accessible, and I would think (hope!) that, unlike many politicians, he won't forget the people he represents after he is elected.

After saying all this, I feel like I should be a paid member of his staff!! But, seriously, I think he's running as the most Democratic member of the Democratic Party.

I remember the first time I met him was during a SEC, when he was standing in the lobby with his booth. I remembered thinking, "Who is this guy? He's running for Lt. Gov.??" But that's the beauty of it ... a concerned citizen who has served our state and our community who decides to stand up and seek the office of Lieutenant Governor to help improve our state and its future. He's exactly the kind of person you want running.

So ... there's my $.02!!

Hampton Dellinger

I am supporting Hampton Dellinger in the LG's race for several reasons, some personal, but mostly because I think he's the best candidate for the role the Lieutenant Governor now plays in our State Government.

There was a time when the LG had to be a master of the backroom operations of the State Senate, more a prime legislator than a member of the Executive. There have been several LG's for whom that role was particularly suited, but it is no longer the case, and while Hampton possesses the experience in government and the temperament to be fantastic at that part of the job, that is no longer the primary skill set.

The LG is now essentially the minister without portfolio of the Council of State. The job is essentially what you make of it, and I can think of no person with recent governmental experience that provides the combination of intellect, political talent, creativity, character and plain old hard work that Hampton does.

I clerked with Hampton's wife Jolynn, and I have had a chance to see Hampton as a person in addition to watching his work with Governor Easley. He is a fantastic father and husband and a good and valuable friend. He has to be smart as hell to keep up with his wife, who is among the very best and most detail-minded writers I have ever worked with.

Hampton is a true progressive. He was brought up that way by parents who have always served the people of NC and the United States, and he continues to carry on that proud tradition himself. You will not need to worry about where Hampton stands. He stands firmly behind what will better the lives of every day North Carolinians. I believe that he understands the proper role of government and how it can be a force for progress in society.

He's also young. That is important. As a Democrat in his mid to late 30s, I'm frankly tired of the old boys network. It's time to begin to infuse the leadership of our party with new blood. Hampton Dellinger has worked at the Governor's elbow during the worst days of the fiscal crisis in 2001-2002. He knows the inner workings of government as well as people with 20 years on him. But he would be a fresh and exciting new face for the Democratic Party to show the world.

Hampton faces three exceptional candidates in this primary. Like our Governor's race, this race shows how much deeper our bench is than the pitiful slate put up by the Republicans. But with Hampton, you get the best of all the candidates in one package. He brings the experience with the sausage grinder of lawmaking, the fresh face and the dedication to progessive and environmental causes, and he puts it into a great package.

Furthermore, he's smart as hell. Wouldn't it be nice to have that in government? He thinks around corners and over the horizon. He's already thinking about where North Carolina goes next, and I think it would do the State a great deal of good to have him helping guide it for the next 8 years.

"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

A Durhamite I don't know

Now, I'm not saying I know EVERYONE in this burg, but I'm a little surprised to find a politician about town whose name I don't know.

My question would be, what's he been doing around here? Is he involved in any activism or political activity? If not, why not?

My progressive candidate

Personally, I feel that there are only 3 progressive candidates in the race.

Of those three, I feel that only one can win a General. (no matter who the repubs would run)

This person has built strong relationships accross the state while advising the Governor, and has worked with decision-makers of all groups ...and somehow can convince all parties to take the progressive step forward.

I am supporting Hampton Dellinger.

*.Dan and Pat are good guys, but I do not see them as having the all-around appeal to get enough swing vote in the general.

not to be rude

But you really think that an adviser to the Governor is better placed than a Lt Col from the National Guard to talk to more conservative voters? Thats simply absurd.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"




I think you need a new avatar.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

So far for me it's between Dellinger and Besse

They are the two I've met.....which means I haven't looked into it too much. I don't feel a sense of urgency to decide here because I feel all of them are qualified.... The only person I've heard anything negative about is Walter Dalton and it wasn't bad negative....just the same old "too conservative, too political" stuff you hear about politicians. Quite frankly, at this point I'm ready to boot Moore and Perdue out and just say we'll take two of the LG candidates and make them Gov and LG.

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

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


Besse and Dellinger strike me as the forward-thinking progressives in this race, with Smathers holding down the "local government" interests.

Dalton has been a big dog in the NC Senate, the same NC Senate that voted to give rich North Carolinians a big tax break this summer, while keeping in place a regressive sales tax increase. That makes him last on my list.

Pat Smathers and Dan Besse are progressive enough for me

And Pat has amazing ideas. Go see him if you get the chance. He'll convince you. He's definitely someone we need to be utilizing at the state level. And he and his family are the real deal. He's not going to scare any good ole boys but he's nothing like them, either.

Besse is great, too, but a harder sell to swing voters.

Walter Dalton is same old same old.

Don't know Dellinger.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Im shocked

Just SHOCKED that we agree. And by shocked I mean not actually shocked at all.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

Come meet Hampton November 14th

If you're in the Raleigh area, you can come meet Hampton at an Oyster Roast at State Dem HQ on November 14th:



Location: NC Dem HQ Suggested Donation: $20.08

RSVP easily using this link: http://hd08.com/events/index.php?event=RaleighNov14th

"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


Don't know if I can make it, but that sounds like a good idea. Tell me, does NCDP open up their headquarters to all candidates for fundraisers? Just curious.

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.

I'm no authority, but

all I have ever seen is that people just have to ask, and if there is availability, they can use it. There may be a nominal charge to avoidhaving it accounted for as an in-kind donation to a particular candidate's campaign.

I've only planed events there for the Wake Dems.

"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

Like I said, just curious.

I think I have plans that weekend or else I might try to stop in and meet Hamp. I'd like to do that with all the candidates eventually.

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.

I could be wrong

But I am pretty sure that it is on a first come first serve basis with candidates having to pay some small fee to the party to cover clean up, keeping the building open etc.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

headquarters open to all Democratic candidates

I just confirmed:

You don't have to pay a fee.
You do have to clean up after yourself.
First come, first serve.

If you would like to schedule an event for an official Democratic organization, or would just like more info, contact Sallie Leslie at 919.821.2777.

Also, if you have a question about the NCDP, you can ask me, and I'll find the answer for you. My number is 202.380.7571 and my gmail is jerimee.richir@

- - - - -


I always assumed that you had to pay something. That building isnt cheap, good for the party to make it free and open.

Also, everyone who wants an event treat Sallie nicely, she is an amazing person.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

good advice

Also, everyone who wants an event treat Sallie nicely, she is an amazing person.

good advice and true

- - - - -

I think that is awesome, it is a wonderful site.

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.

Hampton Dellinger

There is no question in my mind that he is the best candidate, for a number of reasons many of which have been stated above.

Dalton for me

I thought about this and jugded who would be the best to hold this office, and it was Dalton. I will say that whoever wins this seat Democrat or Republican, Basnight will still run the Senate. But I think that off all the candidates Dalton is the only one who will have any chance to be heard by Basnight and presumably Gov Purdue. I any of the other candidates are Lt Gov they will be nothing more than place holders who will have no say in the actions of the state. I also like the fact that Dalton is from the Western half of the state and will help the party make development there also, something I do not think the others can do. When I worked to Easley for Senate in 1990 I met and got to know Hampton Dellinger, but I am not sure why he is running for this post becasue I do not see it being the right fit for him. If he does win the seat he will spend eight years being ignored, the same was Basnight treated Dennis Wicker, and I just do not see that as a good path for either him or the party.

I think maybe you have an old idea of

what the LG does.

Anybody who goes into that office thinking they are going to affect Basnight is deluded. Even Walter Dalton.

Three things in response to your post

(1) We have a Majority Leader. We don't need two of them.
(2) Basnight won't be Presdent Pro Tem for the entire 8 years that this person is LG
(3) The job is what you make of it. Whose ideas do you want to see given a higher profile?

For me the answer is clear - Hampton's.

For the record, I also like Pat Smathers. I think he's a great guy and I like his ideas about helping state government work better for local government. Local governments need more authority in this state.

But I am backing Hampton for the total package.

"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 are you talking about, TM?

I also like the fact that Dalton is from the Western half of the state and will help the party make development there also, something I do not think the others can do

Besse is from Winston. Smathers is mayor of Canton. Dalton is never seen west of his district unless he's trailing the Bev.

He has had nothing to do with the party's wonderful success out west. NOTHING. I lived in WNC for 17 years and in the last three years have visited literally every single county in the 10th and 11th and most in the 5th. I've talked to most of the active WNC Democrats.

Maybe Dalton has been to the private top-dollar insider events but as to the county parties, district meetings, and grassroots organizing, Dalton has been awol. Until I saw him with the Bev in Morganton (at one of the few private high-dollar events I've attended), I didn't even know who he was. That's how "involved" he's been with the party at the grass roots, county-party meeting level.

Compare his presence in the counties with Smathers' and you would never say anything about Dalton helping the Democratic party out west. That's just absurd.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Stepping In

Okay DQ, you know I am a Dalton supporter, but I take exception to your argument above. Dalton spent plenty of time in the district where he was elected and where he needed to be. I don't think previous to this time he should have spent a lot of time party building all over the west. I do think it would be great to have an LG from the West because in the FUTURE they will not ignore us. I realize that Besse and Smathers are also from the west and can serve the same purpose.

Also, I would like to say that while I know that many progressives are mad at Dalton those of us in his district have been really happy with his performance. When our economy was tanking in a big way Dalton helped bring 2 new industries to Cleveland County. Dalton could not possibly run from the left and still win that district. Then we would be stuck with someone like Wes Westmoreland.

Further, Dalton has been an amazing supporter of other Dems some of whom are very progressive in his district. Dalton is very responsive to his constituents and always willing to listen. I know this last budget process made people mad at Dalton and others, but there is more to him than that.

Not gonna argue with you

But no one has gone around the west like Pat Smathers and I don't think anyone would represent the west, as well as the people of the entire state, like Pat.

But I do think we all need to hear more about Walter. I have little doubt that unless something big in the general way of things in Democratic Party politics shifts soon, he's going to win the election.

PS What exactly did he do to bring those two industries to Cleveland?
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

but i love arguing with YOU

Dalton courted Chris-Craft and Inidan Motorcycle. They received state encouragement from the One North Carolina Fund and JDIG. I would never say that Dalton was the only reason...our county commission and chamber did a lot of the hard work, but Dalton was a main ingredient in working out the deal. I can't provide details since I was not privvy to the behind the doors dealing, but no one has questioned that Dalton was a driving force.

For anyone who does not know much about Cleveland County we lost all of our textile work years ago. Our big coup for jobs was the Wal-Mart distribution center which has been very good to our workforce (I know, not what you usually hear about Wal-Mart, but apparently they are run very differently). Either way, the point is we were in need of jobs. Our crime and drug rate has skyrocketed and we needed help. Dalton came through.

"Courted" . . . nice word

What did Walter Dalton "court" for the rest of WNC or the entire state?

You know, state tax breaks for businesses have not always proven beneficial in the long term. And are those jobs union? Are those businesses locally owned? Aside from the salaries, are the profits staying in state?

Pat Smathers notes that 80 percent of jobs are with businesses that have 10 or fewer employees. That's what drives the economy: locally owned small businesses. And Pat has a ton of ideas to grow that kind of an economy in North Carolina.

Relying on mega-corporations (or even smaller ones) to come in and "save" us while we give away tax revenues because we're begging for jobs doesn't work.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Be that as it may, if you

Be that as it may, if you don't have a job those are not the issues you look at. And we have not had jobs for years. When you get some industry it helps people who frequent the small businesses have money to spend there.

what gives you the idea he is inevitable?

I haven't seen a single poll that gives any of them a lad of any significance.

"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

Dalton is going to out-fundraise the rest by far

Walter Dalton has connections to the Democratic power structure that the others don't. He's been playing the give-and-take game in Raleigh for years. That means a shitload of people are most likely already beholden to him which will translate into campaign donations that will crush Smathers and Besse. I don't know Dellinger much but I haven't heard anything about him that makes me think he will fundraise anything like Dalton.

That money will translate into a great advantage in quality and quantity of television advertising and targeted mailings. After a few advertising cycles where no one has heard of the other three, then let's talk about polls.

Also, did you know that his former campaign manager now works for the state party in the west? That's 33 counties where someone who has worked closely with and supports Walter Dalton will be dealing directly with local party officials full time on the state party's budget. How can Smathers or Besse compete against that even if they personally know all of WNC's county officials?

Dellinger, Smathers, and Besse have enthusiastic followings but they don't have the good ole boys and girls behind them like Dalton will. I think it's going to be hard for them to buck the insider "fix" when it looks like none of them will break out of the pack before Dalton starts spending money. And even if they did, once he starts blanketing airwaves and mailboxes, it's not going to be very close.

But, go for it, North Carolina. Prove me wrong!
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,


I have met Hampton several times and had a chance to sit down with him and discuss his vision for our state. He is the real deal and I plan on voting for him.

He is strong on the environment and his ideas for what he wants to get done in the next four years are exciting. Check out his web page, it is a good one.

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

I like Smathers (and Besse)

We need advocates for smaller towns and communities that get ignored in the legislative process. We need people who understand local government. We need people who want to be Lt. Gov., not AG or Governor. We need a leader who will do something productive with the office. We need balance with the Governor. We need a progressive. We need someone with a record; real, elected leadership experience or progressive credentials. Smathers and Besse are the only candidates in this race I could vote for.

1 Thessalonians 5:21: But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.

I always wanted to be the avenging cowboy hero—that lone voice in the wilderness, fighting corruption and evil wherever I found it, and standing for freedom, truth and justice. - Bill Hicks

I agree

Very well said Sam.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"

That's an interesting point Sam.

We need people who understand local government. We need people who want to be Lt. Gov., not AG or Governor. We need a leader who will do something productive with the office.

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.

Curious as to why

you discount Hampton? he is progressive and has more experience in the nuts and bolts of government than all but Dalton. As much as I like Pat, he's the mayor of a very small town, and Raleigh is a different world. That doesn't discount his skills, it just points out that he's no better positioned than Hampton in that regard.

You really couldn't vote for Hampton? Even if he gets the nomination?


"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

Definition of insanity....

losing more than one comment to IE bug and not proceeding to write in word and paste into the little comment box until firefox can be installed.

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.


I find myself firmly in the Besse camp.

Smathers, no doubt.

Love his stated philosophy of bringing ideas for fixes, tweaks and improvements up from the people who know their local communities best.

The actions and inactions of local governments, (commissioners, boards and councils), affects HOW we all live our daily lives in very real pragmatic ways. It affects everything -- where things are built, how they're built, where kids go to school and who teaches them when they get there, how we get to work and what sort of jobs are available, where our water comes from and how much impact our sewer systems have on the environment, how much we pay the tax man and what we and others in our communities get in return for our investments.

I'd love to have someone in Raleigh who has lived that reality and feels it in his soul.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."