Oliver Queen's blog

Discourse on e-mail

I'm not North Carolina's most heralded political expert. I haven't written a book, I don't command five figures a month, and the one time I ran for office I lost (albeit by 150 votes). But I've done a lot of campaigning in NC. From upper Cleveland County (where our foothills start to become mountains), to the concrete jungle of Charlotte, to the affluent Lake Norman Suburbs, to the new urban landscapes of Chapel Hill and Davidson, I've staffed campaigns in almost every part of North Carolina. I've worked to pass transit initiatives; helped young, post-partisan leaders emerge across our state; and I've done some quixotic things (like trying to elect the Southeast's first LGBT Senator).

Feel free to take this with a grain of salt, but after the BlueNC radio chat with Gary Pearce, I found myself wondering: what on earth are the U.S. Senate candidates doing?

It's not in the bag

Today's story in North Carolina's U.S. Senate race is the release of Cal Cunningham's campaign prospectus (h/t Under the Dome), the kind of document that in years past either wouldn't be available or wouldn't be news.

Like you'd expect, the fundraising document outlines why Cal's team believes he can beat Richard Burr. "North Carolina is ripe for an off-year Democratic United States Senate victory and will respond well to an energetic, moderate candidate like Cal Cunningham." But will Cunningham be the Democratic candidate running against Burr? The prospectus does not mention the primary election, and with good reason - it's not in the bag.

UPDATED: Young Leaders Ready to Serve

This year, we're beginning to see what happens in the wake of the most successful youth-powered campaign in American history. Many of North Carolina's young leaders have filed to run for office in this year's important municipal elections. Some are new to politics, some have spent years working to make policies that will help our state, and others have the experience of a previous run for office under their belt. Some are past and present Young Democrats, while others are just plain Democrats. But they're all a departure from the politics-as-usual candidates that have given so many of us a headache over the past few years.

Action Alert: Please Call Your State Representatives Today

Please contact your state representatives tomorrow and ask them to vote against Senate Bill 287.

S.B. 287 is a change to the State Health Plan intended to make the plan's budget solvent. However, the bill adversely affects state employees and teachers, who will have to pay much more for health coverage. The State Employees Assn. of North Carolina expects that many younger workers will avoid the plan for less costly options, exacerbating the problems the bill intends to solve. If less new people buy in to the plan, then it supports older, less healthy people and costs will increase. Down the road, a taxpayer-funded bailout may be necessary for us to fulfill our obligations.

Discussion Thread for NCDP Chair Conference Calls

Please treat this as an open thread to pose questions that may be used on the conference call, and to discuss today and tomorrow's calls with the candidates for NCDP Chair as they happen. We are primarily focused on questions from young people or questions about how Young Democrats will be involved with the North Carolina Democratic Party over the next two years, but we will take questions from all-comers. Candidates have been invited to live-blog on BlueNC after the calls.

Thank you for participating in the future of our state Democratic Party!


Dannie Montgomery
8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 27
For more details, click here

More Better Democrats before June 30th

Goal ThermometerWe have a myriad opportunities for change this year. We can put Larry Kissell over the top, and I'm sure we can find a Democratic upset out there, somewhere. Our goal should be to make the North Carolina Republican Congressional Delegation the easiest to remember in the South - because there will only be 4 Congressmen and 1 Senator after this year.

So why not help out and see if we can get over 100 by the fundraising deadline? If you gave your 10 for Jim, maybe you can give 20 to Hagan. Or do what RobertP does, and cut out that pizza dinner this week. But whatever you do, lets give the media a story they can't ignore - well-funded Democrats prepared for victory in November.

All I want for my birthday is ...

a Democratic Congress!

A little background: I've been living out of my truck since September, working for various progressive Democratic causes across the country. In September, I went to Jena. In the fall, I led a grassroots group to save mass transit funding in Charlotte, NC while working on the Democratic coordinated campaign for the local races in Charlotte. In November, I started working in Iowa for Joe Biden. And in January, I moved to Chapel Hill to work for Jim Neal. But I'm turning 23 today on the 23rd, and I'm ready to work for a Democratic Congress the best way I know how - with ActBlue!

What's kept me sane has been the generosity and energy of the volunteers on all of these campaigns. I met some of the nicest people (and best cooks) I've ever met in Iowa, while activists in Chapel Hill graciously opened their houses to me. I owe a lot of friends - some of them bloggers here at Daily Kos - a big thank you for their help (a few of them even thought enough of me to elect me as a Democratic Presidential Elector in NC-12 earlier this week).

So, in the spirit of gratitude - all I want for my birthday is Democratic victory in November! More below the fold ...

Volunteer for Jim Neal!

Since starting his campaign for the United States Senate, Jim Neal has been learning from voters all over North Carolina by visiting churches, Democratic Party organizations, twenty colleges, and more than twice as many counties. He’s had dinner with state troopers at Bill’s truck stop on I-85, been stuck in traffic in Charlotte, and he can’t stop drinking sweet tea from Bojangles’. His grassroots campaign is reaching out to North Carolina like no Democrat ever has before, but he needs your help to win the May 6th primary.

I just had to say it.

If Gov. Sebelius can be pro-choice and anti-death penalty in Kansas, why can't our Gubernatorial candidates can be against the death penalty in North Carolina?

If an openly gay candidate can replace a disliked Republican in New Hanover County (where there are 1-2% more Democrats than Republicans), why can't an openly gay candidate can replace a disliked Republican in a state where there are a third more Democrats than Republicans)?

If Larry Kissell can come out of nowhere to within tenths of a percentage point of beating an entrenched Republican Congressman, why can't someone do the same in a harder district, in this of all years?

If this isn't the year to change America, who expects that year to ever come?


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