Welcome Secretary Elaine Marshall

And happy birthday! We're honored that you'd squeeze in time for BlueNC tonight. Thank you.

As you've no doubt read, our community members have posted some interesting and thought-provoking questions, which we'll weave into this live blogging event.

Thanks again for visiting with us.

(Those who don't have a good sense of Elaine Marshall's background and experience can go to her website to find out more.)


I'll start

Democrats won in 2009 with the promise of change. What changes, if any, are you prepared to lead on? What are your top three priorities?

And just in case you're hungry for a tough question, please tell us about your discussions with the Big Boys in Washington. The DSCC sometimes seems to have more influence in North Carolina than We the People do.

Happy Birthday Elaine!

Thank you for joining us this evening and thank you for your service to our fair state.

This may seem like a bit of a softball question, but since this a job interview it is appropriate. Tell us how your current position as North Carolina's Secretary of State prepares you to be a U.S. Senator.

Thank you.

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

Thanks so much for having me

Thanks so much for having me here tonight. This is my first live blog so please be patient with me. I hope I can answer questions satisfactorily.

What a great birthday present!

A new and potentially maddening experience out on the Intertubes. Good for you for jumping in.


PS My one word of advice? Relax. The web will be here forever, and we'll be talking about you and this race for months and months to come. If you don't get it all covered tonight, there's always another day!


I'll start with James'

I'll start with James' question about the "big boys." In recent years, party committees have been increasingly involved in choosing candidates. Sometimes they're right, sometimes they're not. In my case I believe strongly that I'm the right candidate for North Carolina in 2010. We have a dialogue with them now and we look forward to partnering with them to send Richard Burr back home.

As for my three priorities, I

As for my three priorities, I have to say jobs, jobs, jobs. That said, I believe we need get our economy moving again and once it is up, we need to put in place the financial regulations that were stripped away during the past ten years. Finally, we need to fix health care. I hope the bulk of that is done before I get there.

You're an optimist!

I hope the bulk of that is done before I get there.

That would be miraculous. I'm betting there will be more than enough to mop up once you're there.

In response to Betsy's

In response to Betsy's question about relevant SoS experience, I refer to my previous answer about financial regulations. As part of my job, I oversee financial securities industry in NC and as the cop on the beat in this area, I know all to well the devastation that scam artists and Ponzi promoters inflict on citizens. I understand better than most why privatizing Social Security is a bad idea. In more general terms, I've worked with legislators, the business community, Congress, innovators and ordinary people who are pursuing their dreams in a business or non-profit venture. At SoS, we've worked to ensure openness and transparency in government and received recognition from groups as diverse as the U. S. Chamber of Commerce and Common Cause.

From Jerimee on an earlier thread

I've heard that you have been able to promote lobbying reform? What reforms have you encouraged, and what reforms are still needed?

I pulled together a blue

I pulled together a blue ribbon study commission in late 2003 and in 2004 made recommendations to the general assembly that closed numerous loopholes, prohibited certain activities and provide for more comprehensive and frequent reporting, all of which can be viewed on line by anyone. This was before any embarrassing headlines. Once the scandals came to light we were able to push even further, requiring notarized reports for lobbyists, signed under penalty of law. We increased resources and auditing requirements.

This is great

One of us should post (or find) a guide to perusing those reports. I'm sure there are revealing connections waiting to be found.

Thanks for your work to implement this.

Financial Services Military

Financial Services
Military Affairs

I'm interested in others but these would be my top choices and where I feel I could serve NC best.

Which of these five "Burrs" is the most objectionable to you

  1. His vote on US contractors and rape
  2. His personal bank run on the eve of a financial sector meltdown
  3. His lack of judgment in arguing with Rachel Maddow
  4. His so-called "health care plan"
  5. Other


  • burrs - n., burz ; any of many missteps in judgment displayed by the sitting senior Senator from North Carolina

Oooohhh, that's a tough one.

Oooohhh, that's a tough one. I think I'll just stick with your new definition and start using a "Burr" as a noun.

Love it!

John: Did you hear about the latest burr?

Mary: Ouch. I did. It was even worse than the one where he voted to let contractors in Iraq get away with rape ... and that's pretty bad.

John: Ouch is right.

I have two Teen Dems from Parkwood High School with me

Katie Muse and Eric Zimmer would like to know what you think you can do as a Senator to help reform education - especially to make sure rural schools aren't left behind.

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

We need to make sure that

We need to make sure that rural schools have access to excellent technology so that students can be well prepared for the new economy and access distance learning programs, providing opportunities that might not be available in less fortunate communities. We also need to do away with underfunding programs that penalize less affluent schools. We also need incentive programs that encourage well qualified teachers to go to rural schools.


We also need incentive programs that encourage well qualified teachers to go to rural schools.

Thank you!

Your answer just about brought tears to my eyes. We won't be able to fix things in time for my girls and their peers, but we need to do more. Thank you.

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

Sarah from Charlotte emailed this question

She's concerned that Charlotte is going to lose its banking foundation and wants to know what you can or will be able to do to make sure that Charlotte remains a strong base for the banking and financial services industry?

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

Please tell us why you think you can beat Brrr

I need encouragement or rather cheering up in this season of so many challenges. I tell myself that you beat Richard Petty so I'm hopeful that you can be our next Senator. Do you have any other reasons for me to be hopeful?

And thanks for running!

-- George Entenman, Chapel Hill

Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo

For 14 years, Richard Burr

For 14 years, Richard Burr supported the policies that resulted in our financial meltdown.In 2010, we will make sure he has to answer for some of those votes. In addition, he has been on the wrong side of issues important to women and in 2010, women will make up a solid majority of the voters. He has consistently sided with insurance companies and special interests over consumers and families. We will hold him accountable.


Jake asked about equality issues. I oppose discrimination, support abolishing DADT (if people will serve, we should honor them. Period), oppose DOMA because I don't believe this is the duty of the Federal government and believe it puts the Full Faith and Credit concept in jeopardy, and support the concept of ENDA as described by Jake.



Three letters

One great answer. You'd be surprise how rarely anyone responds to anything with a simple "Yes."

And another

Do you support Congressional efforts to pass clean energy and climate legislation? Would you vote for a cap and trade bill if in the Senate today?

We also have a question from Todd from the earlier thread

Secretary Marshall,

What are your plans for creating jobs in NC, and keeping the ones we have here?
What will you do to stop (or at least discourage) American companies from shipping American jobs overseas, like Dell has done in Greensboro?
Thank you for participating in the discussions at BlueNC.

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

Five minutes

Eastern North Carolina

Elaine, what do you feel you could do in the senate to help the towns and cities of eastern North Carolina be more at par with cities in the piedmont and western part of the state as far as job creation, infrastructure, and urban renewal.

Happy birthday,
Buck Wilde

Thank you again for joining us, Elaine

You can see the graphic of your smiling face in the right corner. If you click on that graphic you are taken to a list of all threads at BlueNC that pertain to you. We hope this will help voters locate information about you during the campaign.

Please feel free to have someone from your campaign staff update BlueNC readers periodically. All we ask is that they identify themselves as part of your staff. Any posts tagged "Elaine Marshall" will wind up on the above linked list of articles.

Please let us know how we can help with your online communications.


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

Full disclosure

We'll soon have fancy graphics for other candidates as well. This is just a birthday present from BlueNC!

Thank you for the

Thank you for the opportunity. I or someone from my staff will try to respond to questions we didn't get to this evening.

Happy Birthday Secretary Marshall

Very gracious of you to come and liveblog tonight!

I guess my question will be answered in the general jobs category but I wanted to ask about Furniture Manufacturing in particular. While there are still some factories and the people with the skills to run them, how can we take back our manufacturing base here in NC? Are there policies that can be put in place to favor things Made In USA?