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Carolina Journal Radio No. 824: New election proceeding for N.C. 9th Congressional District

Carolina Journal Radio / Donna Martinez and Mitch Kokai
The Truth Network Radio
March 4, 2019 12:00 am

Carolina Journal Radio No. 824: New election proceeding for N.C. 9th Congressional District

Carolina Journal Radio / Donna Martinez and Mitch Kokai

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March 4, 2019 12:00 am

North Carolina’s newly reconstituted state elections board ordered a new election in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District after a four-day hearing into absentee ballot irregularities. Rick Henderson, Carolina Journal editor-in-chief, analyzes the board’s decision and looks ahead to the next stage in the 9th District dispute. During the heated debate over the last U.S. Supreme Court confirmation, critics argued that Brett Kavanaugh represented a threat to the Constitution. Greg Wallace, professor at the Campbell University Law School, examines those claims. Wallace assesses now-Justice Kavanaugh’s likely impact on the nation’s highest court. U.S. Rep. Walter Jones died recently at age 76. He had represented eastern North Carolina on Capitol Hill for nearly a quarter century. His colleagues honored him during a brief ceremony on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. American business history presents many examples of fraud over the years. Edward Balleisen, professor of history at Duke University, documents many of those examples and government responses in a recent book. Balleisen shares key themes from Fraud: An American History from Barnum to Madoff. North Carolina state government exercises tight restrictions over alcohol sales. Jon Sanders, John Locke Foundation director of regulatory studies, documents the state’s system of alcohol “control” in his latest research report. Sanders highlights key elements from his studies.

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From Cherokee to current attack from the largest city to the smallest town and from the statehouse into the schoolhouse Carolina Journal radio your weekly news magazine discussing North Carolina's most of public policy events and issues welcome to Carolina Journal radio why Mitch coca during the next hour, Donna Martin, is that I will explore some major issues affecting our state during the last US Supreme Court confirmation battle.

Critics argued that now Justice Brett Cavanaugh represented a threat to the United States Constitution will hear a Campbell law school experts response to that claim Congressman on Capitol Hill recently paid tribute to the late Walter Jones, Junior, who here highlights from the remarks about the longtime representative from Eastern North Carolina.

The history of American business includes frequent episodes of fraud, Duke University professor documents that history in a recent book, he shares his findings and will dive into North Carolina's complex rules and regulations governing alcohol.

Many of them predate national prohibition.

Those topics are just ahead.

First, Donna Martin has joins us with the Carolina Journal headline there will be a new election that is the word from the state board of elections following a four day hearing into allegations of a ballot shenanigans in the 2018 election for North Carolina's ninth congressional district.

The unanimous board decision came not only after riveting testimony, but after a call by the Republican candidate himself, Mark Harris for a new election even though he appeared to have won that race. On election night last fall.

Carolina journals editor-in-chief Rick Henderson is been following all this very closely. He joins us now with that the details and what comes next. Rick welcome back. Thanks for this incredible story, of course, this is a national story. Following this race, which had been the lone undecided race in the entire country.

Here's the thing, Mark Harris, the Republican candidate. He actually already gone off to Washington DC. At one point and had repeatedly called for his victory. His election night victory to be certified by the state board and then he did a 180 right within 24 hours to and from the point in the state Republican Party from the point of saying Mark Harris won the selection. No one challenged the results.

The time he should be certified is your Washington to I think there should be a election and presumably withdrawing his interest in running in that election. We don't know that for sure this all stemmed from testimony that really was just incredible over the four days time talking with different people who had worked in Bladen County up election workers.

People were working on trying to get ballots from people did we uncover or did them.

The board investigators actually uncover illegal fraudulent activities related to ballots of social media is that it's rare that in real life, we actually see a legal proceeding with others appearing basic moment to actually sell several during the course of this hearing. But, yes, we heard testimony under oath of people who were hired by McRae Dallas. The operative who was the center of this investigation. People who were hired by him essentially to not only order ballots for people, which is perfectly legal, but to collect those ballots sometimes before they were completely filled out to witness them falsely to put stamps on them and then put them in the mail every step. After actually ordering the ballot is is illegal, or at least everything. After maybe handing a ballot to person from a mailbox in the but everything after that is against the law clearly against the wall. Election workers are trained that they can't do that.

McRae Dallas allegedly told Andy Yates the campaign consultant flares campaign and marketeers himself. He didn't do anything like that but we have people testify under oath that Jesse did and he paid me to do it, do we have any idea whether votes were changed. I mean anything or perhaps ballots thrown away or any any word like that to know that this was really tampering with people's vote. We don't know that they're ready.

Ballots were thrown away the right number. A very significant number in the four figures of absentee ballots that were ordered and were not cast.

Now that could well be because people ordered the ballots and decided to vote in person which is perfectly legal thing to do people do quite do that quite often what we do know from the testimony of the people who were there at the trial, is that they would occasionally fill out ballots that had races in which there were no votes cast, else they would simply take the ballot and if what say you voted in Castro Sheriff for Congress and Heather were down ticket races were there left blank that would fill in the names of those filling the spots was ballots and for the envelopes and sealed just incredible. I think I'm anyone, no matter your affiliation politically or ideologically coming here has to stand up on your arms.

It did for me listening to some of that testimony about what apparently went on out. What does that mean then for the operative that you mention McRae Dallas, who apparently was the central figure in this action he was subpoenaed to appear at the hearing. He did so with his attorney and once he appeared his attorney said that Mr. Dallas would testify under oath, but only if you are granted immunity from prosecution by the committee. The committee did not do that didn't go with that deal.

Part of it was citing state law which does not allow the state board of elections to do that they can't grant they're not allowed to grant immunity from prosecution in their hearings and so when with his attorney was informed that was the case then they left. And so use this appear to have no are you where he is right now. I certainly if there any criminal referrals that come forward from the state board of elections for this White County district attorney Lauren Freeman will be very interested in seeing him. She has a parallel investigation going on right now there are some reports of the federal government is having an investigation of this is not the last part of McRae Dallas, which meant ceiling times and at least as of the point you and I are talking here today. That's the situation about Mr. Dallas Rick. There was one particular witness during this election board hearing over the four days. He testified for a number of hours and this is truly riveting testimony. This was the son of the Republican candidate in this race.

Rev. Mark Harris tells about the sons testimony and the import of it.

John Harris's son is 29 years old. He's an attorney. He works in the civil division for the US attorney's office in eastern North Carolina and he was he's worked at the Gen. assembly earlier and who had had some involvement in politics because of his role with the US attorney's office was not involved in his father's campaign and all the talk with some frequency and John Harris. To the surprise of everyone there except for the state board staff who knew this was going to happen appeared as witness on the third day of the hearing and does basically said I was informed about.

I looked at the absentee ballot results in the 2016 election which was a very close primary election in which Robert Pittenger, the incumbent defeated Mark Harris by hundred 34 votes and so the third place candidate Todd Johnson, who finished foreign third-place got 400 so absentee ballots from Bladen County when Ettinger and Harris between them.

Got 10 and he was born to find out more about this person and book, especially because his father had expressed some interest in hiring Mr. Dallas terms of a McRae Dallas who did this, wanted to know how his Pali did that how he got so many absentee ballots in such a small area for one candidate will the others got not in the main word that he got in the situation was that he he suspected from looking at the methods of delivery ballots, all of which are public records.

There probably was some sort of ballot harvesting operation going forward. He told his father about that right up email him. He talks about the phone about it and he said he basically issued all sorts of different warnings.

This guy may be shady was make sure he's operating properly at all that apparently marketeers completely ignored the work. What we know about the Democrat in this race. Dan McCready was he part of the hearing.

His he was represented by attorney Mark Elias is very well-known national elections law attorneys work for number of prominent national candidates.

We know that Dan McCready is raise $500,000 so far on the presumption of a new election, but he was not there at all. In his only roller was to represent advice attorney, but we assume that he's preparing for the next round because of that unanimous vote by the board of elections.

It was five to nothing to go forward with a new election.

So what we know and what are the questions really that that as voters we should be wondering about what comes next at the state board of elections will set a date for new election now by state law. That means an entirely new election.

That means that there will be a new candidate filing.

All five political parties that are recognized by the state can feel candidates there will be time allowed for a first and second primary if necessary, before the general election of those dates will all be set out by the state board of elections. So if there are no further glitches in the process. That's we can expect next.

Just incredible as I mentioned, this is a national news story because there is an empty seat. Frankly, at this point in the United States House of Representatives that should be occupied sent by the person who is representing the ninth District of North Carolina so we will await the declaration of a date at the point you and I are talking, we don't have a date yet and then will go forward. And of course Carolina journal will be covering every element as we travel ahead on this really uncharted road here in North Carolina. Rick Anderson is editor-in-chief of Carolina journal. Thank you very much. Thank you. Say with this much more Carolina journal lady of the company, just a moment government plays a key role in your life affecting your paycheck the way you educate your kids the way you do business. How can you tell if government is doing a good job making the right choices.

Spending tax dollars wisely.

Carolina journal.com tackles those questions every day.

The John Locke foundation publishes Carolina journal in print each month and on the web each day@carolinajournal.com you'll find exclusive investigative reports on topics. No one else is covering what else a rundown of the best new stories, editorials and opinion columns in North Carolina. John Hood's daily Journal news stories and important public events@carolinajournal.tv and the voices of the newsmakers themselves at Carolina journal radio in print on the air and on the web.

You can find the information you need@carolinajournal.com welcome back to Carolina journal radio I Michiko got during the debate over US Supreme Court Justice Brett Cavanaugh's confirmation.

Some critics complained about a potential threat to the U.S. Constitution if he did win confirmation will do such a threat exist. That was the topic of a recent lecture. Our next guest delivered with the John Locke foundation's Shaftesbury society Rick Wallace is a professor at Campbell University law school will go back to the program. Thanks for having me so weak. We did hear this quite a bit to some people saying that if if Brett Cavanaugh ends up on the US Supreme Court. There's gotta be a threat to the U.S. Constitution, even a US senator Kemal Harris make this claim would when you heard these descriptions of a brick cabinet would I think they're misguided what Kemal Harris is worried about is not a threat to the Constitution, which by the way she referred to as the little book and judge Cavanaugh's pocket fear what she's concerned about is the threat to the sort of freewheeling judicial kind of decision-making that allows judges to really decide cases based on their political views and not really based on the text or history or tradition of the Constitution and those are really based on two different approaches to the Constitution right one. One is.

Let's look at the textiles look at what it originally met the other is well. It means what we say it means today exactly and that and that really is what these hearings were about.

They were not really about judge Cavanaugh's past. They were about judicial power and judge Cavanaugh would be a more reliable conservative on the court than Justice Kennedy. I don't think judge Cavanaugh was going to go for making up constitutional rights or fundamental rights that have really no basis in Yen in the text or in the long tradition of of our constitutional decision-making and so I think what what they were concerned about was Robbie number one abortion number two I think probably gay rights. Both of these are sort of different sides of the same coin. Of these, this package of rights that we think of this as rights dealing with sexual autonomy and which by the way, none of which are are found in the Constitution. I think there that's what they're really concerned about. We are chatting with Greg Wallace, professor at Campbell University's law school, and you mentioned conservative, but Brett Cavanaugh would not even necessarily have to be personally conservative to rule in a way that these left of center partisans would dislike if he's just following the Constitution that would hurt their cause yes and and I think that if you look at the history of the core. It is the more conservative justices who tend to be the textual list of the originalists on the court of the more liberal justices tend to be those that adhere to the sort of living Constitution approach where you kind of make up our constitutional law like state common law judges do with, the common law they just kind of make it up based on whatever they think is right at the time that one of the things that that is of interest is that that Brett Cavanaugh having been someone who's seen is more of a textual list store or following the original meanings of the Constitution. Some of said this doesn't necessarily mean he is a slamdunk vote for anything favoring Donald Trump if the president try something that's outside the bounds of the Constitution. Brett Cavanaugh is probably good to be one of those justices will say no.

The Constitution doesn't say you can do it so you get. Yes, in fact if you look at his or he wrote more than 300 opinions on his 12 years District of Columbia Circuit court and in many of those opinions. He takes a pretty strong stand for what we call the separation of powers and in fact he's very concerned about regulatory overreach that is overreached by the executive department.

In fact, and at least 75 cases he voted with the majority in cutting back on the reach of of executive agencies so I don't have any reason to think that he's going to rubberstamp the.

The actions of present one of the issues that is been of great importance in the courts involving North Carolina has been this whole idea of gerrymandering and redistricting, and whether the court should say anything about this. I've heard some on the left say that Cavanaugh on the court probably means now that the Supreme Court is going to step away and say that's a political issue.

We shouldn't be dealing with. It does anything from his past suggest that might be true.

Well the partisan gerrymandering issue was a mass in the court before Judge were now justice Cavanaugh arrived there in fact justice Kennedy wrote the majority opinion in a case 10 or 12 years ago were first when first presented with the issue partisan gerrymandering. The court said while we just can't we can't come up with any sort of workable standard for determining when it's too partisan, and so I think that the court had an opportunity this past year last year to decide these cases, but it punted on standing grounds.

I don't know that I don't know that that just justice Cavanaugh would vote necessarily different than a justice Kennedy would on that case, looking at just the long term future with Brett Cavanaugh on the bench. What you see or how you see him shaping future court cases coming out Supreme Court why think that one of the mistakes of the Democrats made was to mount such an opposition to justice Cavanaugh could because frankly he probably is more of a moderate conservative than a lot of other choices present.

Trump could have made. I think he will probably be more like justice course which by the way voted with justice Kennedy more than any other justice on last year's in last year's turn ride. I don't think he's he's going to be asked conservative SA. Justice Thomas or Justice Alito but I think he's going to be more toward the conservative middle as we go forward in effect before the whole furor about Brett Cavanaugh. There were quite a few people, even on the legal left to said you know of the people that Trump could've chosen. This would be someone that we should support and there were people on the right who didn't want Cavanaugh to be chosen for that very same reason. So I I don't I you know you you don't know kind of how predicting how justices are going to go. I mean, you know, the Republican appointees. Three of the most hardened liberals. Stevens Brennan and Souter were all Republican appointees so you you you don't know really how justices going to go when they get that lifetime appointment. The other angle that probably is of interest to people is justice Kennedy was a swing vote. So now that you have Cavanaugh do you have a pretty strong 54 conservative block or does Justice Roberts now become a swing go well. I think that that justice Cavanaugh use. If you look at his past decisions and if that's a reliable guide and he doesn't swing to the left like a few of these conservative appointed judges have done. I think he will be a more reliable conservative than justice Kennedy. I don't think he's going to end up being the swing vote which may push Chief Justice Roberts more to the middle and be the swing vote like he was in the Obama care case will certainly will be very interesting to watch. We know one person who's going to be watching very closely is Greg Wallace, professor at Campbell University's law school. Thanks much for joining executive level on Carolina journal radio just about if you have freedom we got great news to share with you now.

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Try it today. North Carolina is changing not just day-to-day but outward to our minute to minute and 2nd to 2nd, how can you keep up with the changes, especially the ones that affect you, your family, your home, your job, make the John Locke foundation and Carolina journal part of your social media diet on Facebook like the John Locke foundation like Carolina. Journal follow us on Twitter at John Locke in the sea and at Carolina journal news, insights and analysis you'll find nowhere else. Thanks to the experts at the John Locke foundation and thanks to the first-class investigative reporting of Carolina journal. Don't wait for the morning newspaper wait for the evening news if it's happening now it's happening here the John Locke foundation and Carolina journal. Have you covered with up to the second information like us on Facebook the John Locke foundation and Carolina journal follow us on Twitter at John Locke NC and at Carolina journal did you know you can now advance freedom and free markets just by shopping with Amazon it's true online shopping is now a great way to support the John Locke foundation just shot using the Amazon smile program and designate the work foundation to receive a portion of your purchase amount that's right you shop and Amazon donates money to ask the John Locke foundation.

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Support the John Locke foundation. Welcome back to Carolina journal radio hi Michiko guy, Republican Congressman Walter Jones died recently. He had represented Eastern North Carolina in Congress for nearly 1/4 century.

Among those who paid tribute to Jones on Capitol Hill long time Democratic Congressman David Price water not met long before either of us served in the house. We work together on the North Carolina presidential campaign of Jimmy Carter in 1976.

I'm a photo on my best to prove it. Very useful looking a campaign team well. Walter went on to chart a different course. Politically, a course that was uniquely his own. In fact, he found himself frequently at odds with if not one party than the other but by the same token he sometimes found possibilities for alliances and cooperation in unexpected places and did not hesitate to take those opportunities.

This approach was rooted in Walter's strong conscience and his personal sincerity. He stood out in an age when sincerity sometimes in short supply in our nation's politics, earning respect and admiration on both sides of the Kentucky Republican Thomas Massey also paid tribute to Walter Jones. Some people in Washington DC kiss up and punch down Walter often did the opposite. Walter would kiss down and punch up. He was a statesman and a true southern gentleman who followed his heart while fighting for his constituent and whether he agreed with them or not. Walter displayed the type of courage we could all hope to possess. He was willing to admit when he was wrong like that time, he devoted for Jimmy Carter's. He he would admit it in front of God in front of his colleagues to 750,000 constituents. That's true courage, Walter's conscience guided his every vote and action in the six years that I knew it 11,266 that's the final number of letters that Walter Jones personally wrote offering his apologies and condolences to the families of soldiers who lost their lives in the wars in the Middle East. You see, Walter eagerly voted for the Iraq war, but then later came to believe that he had made a grave mistake did he write those letters to prepare him for his next reelection now. He wrote those letters to prepare him for this day when he would be judged at the gates of heaven the entire US House of Representatives held a moment of silence for Walter Jones dead at 76, after almost a quarter-century representing Eastern North Carolina. In Congress will return with more Carolina journal radio and a moment where dabbling down on freedom at Carolina journal radio were proud to bring you stories that impact your life and your wallet. And now get twice as much freedom when you also listen to our podcast headlock available on iTunes and@johnlocke.org/podcast headlock is a little bit different. It's a no holds barred discussion that challenges softheaded ideas from the left and the right light. Carolina journal radio headlock is smart and timely but with headlock you'll hear more about the culture wars get some more humor as well.

We guarantee great information and a good time to double down with S. Listen to Carolina journal radio each week and listen to headlock to remember, you can listen to headlock@johnlocke.org/podcast or subscriber download each week iTunes Carolina journal radio and headlock just what you need to stay informed and stay entertained both brought to you in the name of freedom by the John Locke foundation. Look back to Carolina journal radio hi Michiko guy fans of free markets believe the transactions between buyers and sellers tend to produce the best outcomes for society, but those transactions depend on honesty, on both sides of the bargain. In our next guest reminds us that there's a long history of this honesty in the marketplace. Dr. Edward Ballis and his professor of history at Duke University. He's author of the book flawed in American history from Barnum to mate off any recently addressed the John Locke foundation. Thanks for joining us excellence are having much your book takes a look at the history of business fraud and the ways that the United States either through government or outside of government has addressed that fraud how to get interested in the subject. I've always been interested in the workings of American capitalism actually met in particular the faultlines of capitalism.

My first production looked at bankruptcy in 19th-century America.

Another faultlines when people can't pay their debts and in that endeavor.

I want his reckless relationship between those circumstances, and when people start shooting the truth and that got me very interested in the question of how pervasive dishonesty is within market contexts, and then more importantly from my perspective, what kinds of institutions people come up with to deal with that problem. Sounds as if if you're calling this fraud in American history from Barnum to mate off that this has been part of our capitalism for as long as we can look back at all and I think we one could make the appointment. Even broader humans are prone both to be honest and dishonest and it depends on the context. So tell us a little bit about what the book flawed sets out to do. Looks about 200 years of American history and surveys not only the kinds of the patterns of dishonesty in the marketplace and more importantly tracks over that century. How Americans have responded to the problem of fraud, whether through market mechanisms or quasipublic kinds of arrangements to trade associations or nongovernmental organizations often connected to the business community are increasingly through use of state power, whether that's at the local, state, or the national level, and this has varied over time as it really has one your Sephardim as the book is that in the 19th century we had yard states we might think of as a legal baseline of de facto caveat emptor Latin phrase meaning by your where wasn't that there were no legal prohibitions against deceit in commercial transactions is just that. Whether you're looking at the criminal law were civil civil law kinds of of context. It was really hard to prove you had a really show intent and to convince a jury might be skeptical and a judge might be skeptical and often the, the amount of harm involved was was relatively low in any given instance to any given party and so that was also a disincentive to actually Marshall forces necessary to bring anyone into a legal proceeding. So went without legal baseline of caveat emptor. One of things that emerged were large number of market responses to the problem of deception which you see on any in any any context. So things like the current reverse of the accounting profession over the creation of financial news to key people of abreast of what's going on in stock markets of the problem was that those types of responses were always subject to corruption. You could have rumors in the newspaper. You could have falsehoods in the newspaper try to move the stock market, you could have think advertising in newspapers and so eventually in a growing number of markets even as early as the mid-19th century, but more so into the 20th century. One began to see coalitions emerge involved. Sometimes businesses often experts of one kind or another, are sometimes politicians looking to make a name for themselves and they would come together with proposals to do something more more aggressive about limiting deception in an economic context in the government did step in and understand that your book shows how the government grew and then stepped back and now perhaps is growing again. Yes, although maybe maybe stepping back into so there is a steady increase of antifraud policies in specific markets in the late 19th century. Sit around for fertilizer and are creating offices of official chemists and state governments to actually police fertilizer markets inspects fertilizer, which can do is just a plain old farmer in the 1880s, the federal government gets involved with with anti-mail fraud endeavors as early as the 1870s, but in the it's is Rhonda the new deal when you really see much more significant expansion of the federal level with both the Christian Securities and Exchange Commission, and expanded power for the Federal Trade Commission. Other statutes are important to because of the two agencies I think have the biggest anti-fraud response building the federal government and those entities along with the profusion of consumer protection agencies and antifraud divisions within state Atty. Gen.'s offices and at the local level in an district attorney's offices accrete something along the lines of antifraud state in the 20th century. But as with so many other contexts in United States around the late 1970s there was a turn away from from stringent regulatory policy and that showed up in the in this domain as well. Now if one looks at the more recent history. The record is mixed. The Obama administration on the one hand, created the consumer financial protection Bureau very much with anti-deception, concerns, and in view of others as well of the doubt that that's also the moment when you see the legislation passed like the jobs act was actually reduced in a very significant way. Disclosure requirements on the part of new firms looking to raise capital and L courseware were grappling with the top administration and I think it's it's fair to say that Natalie Socha national level concern about many of these issues in the federal government has is a has declined while we have Pres. Donald Trump on the other side.

Those who would like to run against him. Some of them are very interested in either restoring or maybe even having more safeguards if they if they were able to enter the white that's absolutely true, and I think the no one more so than those with foreign whose research is a law professor was quite instrumental actually in structuring the creation of the consumer financial protection. Your book really looks at the history of how this is ebbed and flowed. I'd like you to take off that the historian had for second and a put on your Carnac the magnificent hat I will always going to see some sort of balancing act between letting the market take care of itself and having the government step in because the markets not get a B expert at taking care of itself completely.

Yes, because there to be gaps in information between buyers and sellers, especially in the kinds of markets were doing today 11 sees a pattern of of generational amnesia when fraud incidents goes down, people forget about it and they think about the costs associated with antifraud policies and their across their trade-offs, their trade-offs against the rule of law because the most effective antifraud policies can be fairly vigorous and immediate and raise questions about the process.

There are trade-offs between innovation and antifraud policies because almost by definition, if you're going to be very closely policing the kinds of marketing people can do. You're going to be limiting innovative behavior in the marketplace. Those trade-offs are not easy to make and and I think it's very it's I will receive is a pot is a pattern as you as you describe quite well of tilting in one direction or the other and making corrections. Certainly an interesting topic and probably one that's going be right for follow-up she could do new additions to this book.

Hence we move forward in the years ahead. Dr. Edward Ballis and his professor of history at Duke University. Also the author of the book flawed in American history from Barnum tomato. Thanks much for joining us think so Mike will have one Carolina German radio just a commitment to truth and transparency in government. That is the mission of Carolina journal and we are proud to deliver and now proud to tell you the North Carolina press Association has honored to members of our team with awards reporting and writing, that's right, we really do deliver award-winning journalism we shine the light on government spending, reveal the truth about boondoggles and dig deep into programs paid for with your tax money. We keep you in the know in a way other media outlets don't in our reach and influence are growing all of our outlets. We reach more than 1 million N. Carolinians each month so make sure you're one of them are monthly print edition arrives in your mailbox every month. Our online daily news site Carolina journal.com has fresh stories, opinion pieces, and more. The award-winning Carolina journal team I reporters make government accountable to you. Call 1866 JL FINFO for your free subscription, welcome back to Carolina journal radio I'm Donna Martinez has been eight decades since our state alcoholic beverage control system was devised and now some members of the North Carolina Gen. assembly believe it is well past time to modernize this outdated system. Our next guest degrees John Sanders is the John lock foundation's director of regulatory studies. He has recently produced a report about the alcoholic beverage control system. You can find that John lock.work, but John is here to tell us all about what is in this report.

John welcome back to the ship. Thanks, Donna controlling liquor does that deed back to the days of prohibition, or even earlier than that in in North Carolina put dates back to state prohibition in North Carolina which preceded federal prohibition by number of years and people may not realize that time most people, when you think of controlling liquor you think of the 1930s yeah you you normally think of federal prohibition, but the North Carolina and started back in 1908 when we are prohibited the sale of alcohol tell us what happened back in 08 and why that even came to be, well, it came to be.

After a number of years where legislators and concerned citizens wanted to get rid of alcoholic sales and in North Carolina and they were eventually successful in enabling it in being able to put a vote on the balancing in were able to get people to ban then comes federal prohibition and then of course we know that Tim prohibition was set repealed.

So what happened when prohibition was repealed in North Carolina. Just get back into this business.

State policymakers realize they needed to get back into the business because they looked at the maps and saw that about two thirds of North Carolinians were going either north to Virginia or south of South Carolina to get beer and wine and liquor. What if they decide to do.

They decided to create the state alcoholic beverage control system which allowed counties if they pass the vote to allow liquor sales but it was under heavy state control theory behind the control.

Is it just concerns about excessive drinking, or their other issues involved is mostly concerns about getting too much access and that retailers would have a financial interest in continuing to fly people with liquor even if they were completely trashed. So it was definitely concerns about the public safety aspects of an effect is regulated under public safety.

I can tell you that my husband and I moved to North Carolina from Arizona and the way that liquor is available and handled it very different and we were kind of surprised we didn't know what an ABC store was moved to North Carolina help us understand how North Carolina controls liquor and how other states do this. North Carolina is one of 17 states considered a control state in that means. In general, the state controls the whole Tate wholesale and retail distribution.

What makes North Carolina unique among control states is that while the government controls the wholesale the retail is handled by local governments through their ABC boards. It sounds very very complex and heavy on bureaucracy, all sorts of boards and people who make decisions down one of the things I try to do in the report is given a flowchart of how the system works because it is very complex, very Byzantine and confusing, especially if someone comes from out-of-state. Like you mentioned it's it's just a maze of bureaucracy because you can go to the grocery store you can go to all sorts of stores and by beers by winds, but you can't buy spirits right which is I think one of the confusing facts of it is that we make a distinction between spirits and beer and wine. If we are worried about the intoxicating effects of alcohol you would think that we would have control the other way. But here's the thing.

They're all legal products and so if were going to treat them as legal products, who shall treat them the same way. I think explained to us more about the difference in and how beer and wine are treated in terms of fat the customer's perspective and also the producers perspective versus someone who is producing or trying to buy us a whiskey while in the state where it's a license day for those aspects and so dear producer wine producer can go to a wholesaler who will then take the product to a retailer and that will reach the customer, where as if you are a distillery you have to convince the ABC commission to list your product, at which point the the product can be stored in the ABC warehouse at which point the ABC board the local one of the 433 local boards can and squeeze me in one of the local boards can decide to put in one of their stores.

Then they ordered from that the warehouse and the name listed in the store. If you are someone who is producing some sort of specialty whiskey and you want to be able to sell it. Does that mean you have to go around to multiple boards and try to convince people that this is a product that they should have on the shelves at their local ABC store yet as part of the problem. Once you get listed by the commission. You still have to convince that the local boards to have it in your store, John, that sounds like that is so complicated and so bureaucratic and costly to someone who is in the production business.

Why would they even bother. It seems like it's a disincentive to even be in the business. It does function as a disincentive and that's one of the reasons I believe that we have had so few distilleries coming back. Despite so many more breweries and wineries coming back. That's interesting that what's the disparity like between the industries. There are over 300 breweries now there are nearly 200 wineries not quite 200 wineries, but only 57 distilleries now to put this in context before 1908, North Carolina was the nation's leader in number of distilleries and we also were the nation's leader in selling wine products I mentioned at the beginning of our our discussion that there are a few members of the Gen. assembly, who, like you believe that this is outdated like the John Locke foundation and think that it's time to change this so in order to go about that.

What would be the steps that North Carolina would take to rest loose some of this control. From these data local boards to cut the Gordian knot when it comes to boards just get rid of them. That would get rid of that would be a huge improvement in the system.

Think about privatizing. Think about serving and in treating distilleries the same as breweries and wineries and liquor the same as is beer and wine and then I may just rethink the entire code to come, because other states don't have this type of control system. Some do but time as you mentioned that the local component is exclusive to North Carolina but are there other states that we can model ourselves after if we wanted to open this to make a free market. There are many other states that have many other good ideas. And that's one of things I'm working on in my next report.

Every state has its own unique system and if you think about the states as laboratories of democracy than we have seen numerous laboratories in this field. We been talking with John Sanders.

He's director of regulatory studies for the John lock foundation account.

Thanks very much, think that's all the time we have for the program this week. Thank you for listening on behalf of Mitch Kovach.

I'm Donna Martinez hope you'll join us again next week for more Carolina general radio Carolina journal radio is a program of the John Locke foundation to learn more about the John Locke foundation, including donations that support programs like Carolina journal radio send email to development John Locke done or call 66J LF info 1-866-553-4636 Carolina journal radio is the John line foundation, Carolina's free-market think tank and Carolina broadcasting system, Inc. all opinions expressed on this program and are so clearly written plan for the station.

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