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Carolina Journal Radio No. 773: Carolina Journal reporting, editorials earn honors

Carolina Journal Radio / Donna Martinez and Mitch Kokai
The Truth Network Radio
March 12, 2018 12:00 am

Carolina Journal Radio No. 773: Carolina Journal reporting, editorials earn honors

Carolina Journal Radio / Donna Martinez and Mitch Kokai

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March 12, 2018 12:00 am

The N.C. Press Association recently recognized Carolina Journal’s excellence with three awards. Carolina Journal Online won first-place honors in NCPA’s annual competition for Election/Political Reporting and Editorials. CJ also collected a third-place award for News Enterprise Reporting. Editor-in-Chief Rick Henderson discusses the awards and their significance for Carolina Journal’s work. Thirty years have passed since then-U.S. Education Secretary William Bennett put forward a theory that increased student aid from the federal government drives up the cost of college tuition. President Jenna Robinson of the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal recently reviewed what has come to be known as the Bennett hypothesis. Robinson investigated whether Bennett’s idea still holds true three decades later. The University of North Carolina system recently spent $250,000 as part of an effort to rebrand itself. President Margaret Spellings explained in a news conference why the system pursued a rebranding campaign. The next federal farm bill is bound to feature dubious subsidies. One person keeping an eye on that legislation is Daren Bakst, research fellow in agricultural policy for the Heritage Foundation. Bakst explains why the farm bill does much more than give a helping hand to struggling American farmers. He urges reform of the legislation. The candidate field is set for 2018 N.C. legislative elections. Most offices will be contested this year. Becki Gray, John Locke Foundation senior vice president, discusses interesting matchups, key legislative retirements, and the potential impact of this year’s electoral contests on control of the General Assembly.


From charity to Currituck from the largest city to the smallest and from the statehouse into the schoolhouse Carolina Journal radio your weekly news magazine discussing North Carolina's most public policy events and issues welcome to Carolina Journal radio amateur coca during the next hour, Donna Martinez and I will explore some major issues affecting our state. 30 years have passed since the US education secretary offered a new theory. He said federal student aid helps drive up the cost of college tuition. Now a North Carolina-based higher education watchdog group puts that idea to the test. Speaking of higher education.

The UNC system recently engaged in a six-figure rebranding campaign will learn why the next federal farm bill is bound to features of dubious pieces that have nothing to do with helping struggling farmers you hear an expert's assessment and will look at the slate of candidates for North Carolina's 2018 legislative elections whose running where those topics are just ahead. But first, Donna Martinez joins us with the Carolina Journal headline one of our regular gas on this program is Rick Henderson who is editor-in-chief of Carolina Journal. Usually, Rick joins us to talk about Carolina journals reporting on a particular issue or a challenge that faces North Carolina policymakers and taxpayers. But this week it's a little bit different.

Rick joins us to accept. Congratulations for his team will talk about some stories as well. Welcome back to the program.

I stopped congratulations in order to you and the reporting team specifically Carrie Travis seventh of Carolina Journal for winning some awards from the North Carolina press Association. That's awesome yeah that was very exciting for us really pleased. First you that we've had of the competition 27 years of publication, and we were delighted to be hard was it was it was right even for us to do that because it's the sort of thing we could not have entered this competition more than about 1/2 dozen years ago because he was really a place for us to be.

Now that we have that opportunity and we are confident enough in our work to place the entries was really delighted.

Let's talk about some of the award-winning work from Carolina Journal, which by the way, you can find at this wiki yourself received an award for editorial writing on this list a series of editorials that you wrote related to the general assembly session tells about the thesis.

What I want to do is find some of the columns of the previous year dealt with some issues that had not been getting a lot of coverage in the traditional press from the mainstream press and so I package them as sort of underappreciated stories from the recent legislative session so that includes editorials about the fact that we had gotten through another budget cycle without any serious problem that we've actually been able to cut taxes and increase savings still go get some spending increases in there as well. Really got a lot of attention in the other press so that was one of the stories. Another one that I had to do with the absence of unaffiliated members of the State Board of elections so that subsequently may change the law. Thus there were Democrats were complaining that although unaffiliated voters are coming had become the second highest category classification of voters in North Carolina but had no representational state. One of elections. My basic plot was there was no way to do that because the general civil had allocated a slot for affiliate candidates. Besides, if there's not an unaffiliated party. North Carolina is not another thought in our independent parties such as the balance of the sort of issues that I discussed. That may not of gotten much attention and the action with the executive president of the press Association sent me a personal note saying that he read all the entries and he thought that my roots really were so so I was quite sick that Rick why think is really important for listeners to understand about you winning this award is not only is it just terrific that you you won the award in Carolina Journal has been honored in this category for editorial writing, but it really speaks to the niche that Carolina Journal really fills in terms of covering things that other media members, newspapers, radio, television, don't cover right that's right we don't try to be you don't pretend to be the paper of record that you have to pick up if you want to know everything that's going on in state government. Carolina will cover issues that we think are very important to our audience and that should be covered so that's why we will deal with the education policy from perhaps a different perspective.

In other places we might talk more about property rights or open government transparency issues and things like that and so went on front cover every legislative hearing will try to make sure that issues that are relevant to limited government and visual freedom project coverage that something otherwise gets paid attention to buy me out. Let's talk about the two other awards, this time both of them. One by associate editor Carrie Travis and up-and-coming journalist in this area really proud to have her working here at Carolina Journal.

Let's talk first about her series on juvenile justice reform raise the age. Specifically, what was that about Rick. Those were belt efforts in general simply to change the way that young offenders are prosecuted handled by the justice system was Carolina wound up being the last state in the nation still treated people who were younger than 18. As as adults. In many cases in this process. Chet raised the age of prosecution in the juvenile system from 16 to 18, so what. It simply did was phased in this process so that people who were younger than 18. Many of the males were not treated just simply warehouse in the adult system or handled by juvenile courts which typically they get more counseling. There's much more rehabilitative efforts to to to handle these young people and to give them opportunities to all once they have's paid their debt to society to actually reintegrate in normal society not to simply be dumped out as as I dumped out of the Walmart parking lot and be left on their own.

This and become an issue for him.

State lawmakers because they were looking at research that was showing that reform of this kind in other states had had really had some sort of an impact or correlation with recidivism and of course the goal of any system would be to some is good to be back out in society. You want them to become productive, law-abiding members of society.

You don't want them to reoffend right and we just been laggards issue people. John Locke foundation had made the effort and the regards of research and to talk about the fact that other states had great success in the main issue that point that was convincing the Gen. assembly and the public at large that it was worth the additional expense to move these categories of offenses from adult offenses to juvenile offenses for older offenders and to point out if you will, that the initial investment because it requires an initial investment not only in different sorts of facilities but also an investment in people to serve as counselors and serve as mentors serve as judges in the and to actually adjudicate these cases, but that upfront cost was worthwhile and were very happy to see that the that had an impact because it's one thing when you have the American Civil Liberties Union or some group is normally associated with left comes out and says we need to handle criminal offenders differently if there basically engaged in nonviolent offenses but it's another thing entirely for a group that's working affiliated or aligned with conservative essays, Rick and Carrie Travis's second award for reporting M came for sent a series of pieces she wrote about our really terrible problem in North Carolina and other state and that is human trafficking right. She helps you one that awarded very happy get about that about that. The recognition and acknowledgment because the most people have associated the issue of human trafficking with immigration and illegal immigration. What do you hear about of the euros available loads of volume 20 Salvadoran immigrants who were being used essentially abroad over the across the board to serve as cheap labor day labor for different facilities difference construction sites. As for think she focused on sex trade and the fact that there are of hundreds if not thousands of victims in North Carolina is one of the real hotbeds nationally for the sex trade in for move, mostly women, who were abducted against their will, or who quite often are becoming involved in abusive relationships that are used for prostitution from drug trafficking for other sorts of of of purposes in and she should a very good job of actually finding organizations that were trying to help these women and pointing out the fact that that was very that I had a big impression of the legislature that there's the problem is that you can rescue these women from this life within what happens like juvenile offender issue then what what do you do how do you provide them with education and training. How you give a place to live. What sorts of things happen and right now state law did not allow state funding to go to an off while these nonprofit organizations, and so this is something generals and we still dealing with, but it would we raise the attention on it and she got an incredible amount of compliments from the general simply about that. If you would like to read these award-winning stories from Carolina journals Rick Henderson and Carrie Travis. They are online where they were published at Carolina. Rick Anderson is editor-in-chief Rick, thank you very much.

Congratulations to you and your team. Thank you very much. Same with his mentor Carolina Journal radio to come in 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 tackles those questions every day. The John Locke foundation publishes Carolina Journal imprint each month and on the web each day at Carolina. 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 and the voices of the newsmakers themselves at Carolina Journal radio imprint on the air and on the web. You can find the information you welcome back Carolina Journal radio live Ashoka 30 years have passed since the US education Sec. offered what came to be known as the Bennett hypothesis deals with the link between college tuition and student aid from the federal government. Our next guest recently asked, does the Bennett hypothesis still matter, Jenna Robinson is president of the James G. Martin Center for academic renewal. Welcome back, Jenna. Great to be here much.

So first of all, before we get into whether it still matters remind us what was the Bennett hypothesis and who was Bennett so Bill Bennett was the education secretary for Pres. Ronald Reagan and he offered his hypothesis in an op-ed in the New York Times in 1987, and at the time there were a lot of data available about what was going on because student loans and only really ramped up in the late 70s, but what he said was that the availability of federal money gave universities the opportunity to raise tuition.

He didn't say necessarily nuts it of directly causing them to raise tuition. It certainly gave them the opportunity to do what they wanted to do anyway which was collect more money on, and it's really it's pretty intuitive that if the University knows that students have more money available to them that they're able to raise their tuition to know what they wanted to be in order to pay for football fields aware rockstar professors new student unions or what have you. And that was a prediction that was made back in 1987 fairly early on into this process. Now 30+ years later you asked in a column for the Martin Center does that Bennett hypothesis still matter and what was your answer yes it does. We know that since 1978 when I universities student that tuition and fees had their own CPI on we know that since then, tuition is gone up tuition fees and got about 1500% now the consumer Price Index. In general, I can't remember it offhand but somewhere around 300%.

So it's it's magnitudes different. It's more than healthcare it's more than new construction, which I think when people hear that they think will cost.

We had a bottle in construction what's going on with student loans and so when a lot of scholars over the past 30 years started examining his hypothesis and testing it. That's what you do right.

You test the hypothesis doesn't work, a majority found that yes there is a connection between federal they of the availability of federal money and student loans.

They found different degrees of what what that relationship wise and like I said it's it's a majority was in all of them. Some of them found there was in a relationship but I think that that we take the evidence as a whole. Say yes.

I think Bennett was and it had the right idea. That is the voice of Jenna Robinson. She is president of the James G. Martin Center for academic renewal. Jenna, some people might be listening to us and thinking okay well you know the colleges get to raise the tuition but there's more student loan money so students can get these loans. What's the problem why is this a problem. The problem is that students cannot pay them back.

Students are not able to get jobs that are commensurate with the amount of loans that they have taken out for variety of reasons. More students are going to school without a real idea of what they want to study what they want to accomplish either going to school without the preparedness that they need to really succeed in college and so there are a good number of students who are either dropping out without ever finishing a degree in those student support has a terrible time trying to pay off their loans.

The students default at very high numbers and then there are other students who do graduate with a degree but then are underemployed and so for a variety of reasons. Students can't make these loans and it has a fax kind of further in the economy. Because of that, in addition to creating problems for the students. It also says is that this would set up a situation which there's no fiscal discipline for the universities to keep a lid on tuition if you save yourself okay with working raise tuition but the students are to be able to take out money to pay for there's there's no incentive to say we should keep tuition as low as possible, absolutely. One place where we do see an incentive to keep a lid on tuition is with public universities and community colleges there increases have been a lot more modest compared to private universities, and that is because of course the public is a watchdog for all these public universities. The taxpayers are watchdog for that and said there is a point at which taxpayers was a little more pain for this is a public university.

Why are you also charging the cements tuition and so there is some incentive there and I think that's a good thing that people are watching out on that and but you're right that private universities, especially elite private universities have been able to raise their tuition can really without any limitations looking at this this is something that was identified as a potential problem at least 30 years ago now from what you're saying we see that it is a problem.

Is there any sign that the that other than this public watchdog attempt to limit the. The increases that everything is good to be done to change the system again. I think the biggest indicator that were going to see a change is that we finally started seeing public awareness change and so we see this fewer students fight by a really small margin are choosing to go to postsecondary education and I think that that's an indicator that we have finally hit up on a ceiling for this and so you know for years and years. The not the percentage of high school graduates who went on to college, increased year-over-year. Every year we finally got about 70% of all high school graduates went on to college and then it took a tiny debt and we've stayed in the high 60s for almost a decade now and I think that's an indicator that no more tuition increases no more enrollment increases or really can be tolerated by the public and so because of that, and I think it's because we've seen really the skyrocketing tuition and have really good measures that start to see in the media people talking about maybe apprenticeships are a better idea maybe trade schools are a better idea.

Maybe college isn't paying back what it promised and so I think that there has been a public awakening on this issue and I think that in order to get any meaningful policy change that public awareness is really key from your vantage point. Is this a good thing that people are starting to take a look at this and look at alternatives to the college for all ideal. Yeah, absolutely. I think that an academic route doesn't serve all students. There need to be students who go to vocational education students go to apprenticeships or the military. Students who take a little bit of time off to work and then decide that they really wanted to be sitting there way too many students who go to get what they probably think is generic college degree a degree that they they don't really have in mind how they're going use it or what they're going to do or what their plans are getting a little bit more on invested in the purpose of higher education is a great thing for students. The title of the column does the Bennett hypothesis still matter. The author, Jenna Robinson, president of the James G.

Martin Center for academic renewal people would like to read this column and other items that you've written about work in the five they can find it at James G. right. Jenna Robinson thanks for joining us think you mentioned level on Carolina journal radio.

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It's that easy. So now not only will you enjoy what you buy. You'll also support freedom. Don't forget log on to today by something nice and help defend freedom. Support the John Locke foundation, Qubec, Carolina journal radio I Muskoka University of North Carolina system recently spent 1/4 million dollars for a new logo and brand. Why Pres. Margaret spellings explained during a news conference unveiling the logo features of dark blue map of the state with a white star and yellow letters in and see when I first arrived in North Carolina heard a lot of people talking about how this was the best kept secret in the state. So on, but I was heartened when the bond passed by such a wide margin, and I knew and I think we all know that North Carolinians love this university. I love the University and their community. But they also appreciate the power and the mighty engine that is the University of North Carolina system where in a day and time when 70% of the jobs require postsecondary education. The people of North Carolina have what we offer and need what we offer and we are a big part of the success and prosperity of North Carolina and why we are a growing and thriving state this new unified platform and brand gives us the opportunity I think to talk about the system as as an entity itself why we doing this now. This is a time when I think people are often rightly skeptical about higher education, including public higher education.

They see prices go up they see debt levels high. They wonder about the value proposition and and that's why it's important we do a much better job of telling our story how higher education is indisputably a part of the future of the state, and of course each of us as individuals.

So we have this paradox that at the time when higher education is most needed. People are increasingly skeptical and that's why it's important we talk about what we do or powerful ways. Our mission today and beyond is going to continue to talk about what this university is and means how we need to do something we've never done before in American higher education, and that is educate you know darn near everybody to much higher levels and very affordable place and we aim to do that we will think that we will close the rural urban divide. We will make the needs of the of the economy in the workforce, especially in the stem fields that are so prominent here in this state. We will address issues of affordability. We are addressing addressing issues of affordability and the we are are mighty and important that you would see sister Pres. Margaret spellings she's offering details about the University's recent quarter million dollar branding campaign includes a new logo for the University system as a whole will return with more Carolina journal radio in a moment real influence. You either have it or you don't and at the John Locke foundation. We do, and that's not bluster in a private survey of more than 250 North Carolina political insiders 87% said we influence them either a great deal or a good amount.

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The John Locke foundation were dedicated to making North Carolina first and freedom were dedicated to you look back Carolina journal radio I Muskoka as Congress prepares to address the next federal farm bill.

Our next guest is drawing attention to one particular piece of the legislation. It amounts to a $15 billion year safety net for farmers. Darren Baxter is research fellow in agricultural policy at the heritage foundation. Welcome back there face magistrate Peter say welcome back because of many listeners of this program but remember the Darren Baxter's longtime legal and regulatory policy analyst and director of legal and regulatory issues for the John Locke foundation Jack Bridgers had been back with us on this very interesting topic. So the federal farm bill is a very large piece of legislation lots of pieces but the piece that you're focusing on is what is thought of is sort of a safety net for farmers.

Why should we be focusing on quickly. I think when people safety net is really what people think of when they think of Farmville really most of it is food stamps is the cost of it be the farm bill costs around 90 $200 billion a year to the safety net component is really what people think of when you come the handouts to farmers to help them allegedly to assist with risk and cost about $15-$20 billion a year. My big concern with the state is that I think people think if I asked somebody walking on the street. What is the safety net for farmers when we help them with think of when there's a big storm.

There's a drought that may be crop losses well if if only that was the case, unfortunately, does not see it and it really is focus on providing a very small number of farmers growing a small number of commodities assistance just because it only revenue targets is usually the wealthiest farmers are getting this money. Most farmers don't get the subsidies and is certainly focuses not on crop losses. Let's let's turn back to this because you just made this point but I think it's worth mentioning again people here safety net.

They think major damage. Major crop losses were just helping out these farmers so they could stay in business. You're saying that the way this operates is basically just taking all economic risk out of the equation and if they if they don't meet a revenue target to get some money for the taxpayer, you know federal policies become insulting the farmers you know the mom-and-pop shop around the corner to manage the ordinary business risk of running a business. But for some reason it comes to farmers, Congress doesn't think the farmers are capable of doing so will grant most farmers are don't get the subsidies, but for these kind of this small number cronies are getting assistance just because an all meat is a revenue targets of nurses the less revenue than they thought comes to light through the crop losses in the disasters. The some of the focuses plus you have of a bumper crop of your former weather to be perfect the production to be awesome. Historical records are still getting a check from government and by by government I mean taxpayers right taxpayers or foot the bill were talking to Darren Baxter research fellow in agricultural policy at the heritage foundation and I want to go back to point you also just made that so people might think this is a safety net for all farmers but you say that some of this money is most of this money is really going to farmers in a very small segment of the overall farming population right so we look at about 10% of farms are getting about 75% or so. The commodity payments and also the crop trips, indemnities suited for commercial research service. Others all kinds of data so my over didn't you hear about the Congressional research service just issued a report look to the farm program support and said that 94% of the support is going to just six commodities that includes rice and corn and soybeans, row crops, and you know some cruisers are say well, but that's where all bag productions coming from Lashley all that support is really going to 20% of that production so another way of putting it is commodities that are connected to about three fourths or 75% of all bag production is about 6% of farm program support. In other words, most farmers. Most agriculture is knocking the subsidies is really in our culture. Safety net or former safety net is really, crony seating efforts like number of farmers and these I suspect are the farmers that somewhere along the line found a way to get on the gravy train while the rest of their colleagues or are in business like everyone else. You know farmers who pride themselves on being really independent blue freedom and for a lot of farmers that's the case, but you know the always on the create an exception when it comes the subsidies and yes for corn and and rise, soybeans, certain farmers have been able to kind of take avenge the system. Now the 30s and 40s.

You know there is different conditions that existed if he actually had some his programs existed in large part to be a social welfare program to actually help not just with market issues, but also because farm households are making half of what nonfarm hassles were making all things are definitely changes that in fact is this not 50.

Is this really the opposite. Now, farm households make the median income is about 50% greater than a hassle for all US households their wealth median wealth of farm households about 10 times greater compared to all US households. She let us reverse Robin Hood effect were taxpayers heading all this money primarily to these very wealthy farm households and to to manage the same rest that anybody else a business manages and you wanted business to manage and is pretty hard to defend. The vets were trying to go after the next Farmville.

You mentioned that this is in the Farmville and so you're not just about raising these issues to make people mad. You hope there will be an impact on policy what's what's the goal here first. I do hope they're mad this the second thing is looking at the house and Senate agriculture committee's are going to be not trying to reduce the subsidies or to try to expand them as usual for the eye thing when people are listening to this may think I was the Farmville mother farmer doesn't impact me but but it does impact your first, what will he publicize that these subsidies distort the decisions made by farmers. So instead of responding to the market. Farmers are to plant based on the subsidies will make planting decisions based on the subsidies. Certain programs like the federal sugar program drive up prices for consumers are paying higher food prices as a result these programs so there's a lot of reasons for a lot of folks to be concerned about this on top. Of course, of the fact were paying $15 billion a year to come help much. Cronies these farm bills crop up every five, six years or so is there any sense as you're watching this that that people are getting the message and thinking we gotta do something about this. You know, one thing that heritage foundation try to do is try to get ahead of the curve a little this time around. I think in the past we time to respond to respond to depicted legislation has been introduced by the CAC committees and that point things a little too late. So we definitely try to help shape message before this farmer comes around Ross working with groups on the left and the right to try to develop a broader coalition be split or not. Folks in Montana right agree that this farm subsidy system is out of control and were trying to lease bring some common sense to in the brief time that we have left you think there will be a better Farmville. Because of this discussion. Well, I won't be help ally's uphill battle, but I think that there will be. There will be some changes is not rock you see everything overnight open and we can always move the ball forward and I can as with all we can really hope for at this point, given how entrenched these articles or special interests are rough, we can come to keep the ball moving forward and keep sheep.

The dialogue were doing well one person is going be watching very closely and raising concerns as these add committees try to beef up their bills and take more money from the taxpayers is Darren Baxter. He is research fellow in agricultural policy at the heritage foundation. Thanks for joining us. I love on Carolina journal radio just a moment.

Full color throughout every issue more visual storytelling. We've revamped Carolina journal to make it easier to read a new look and a new feel. But one thing hasn't changed and it never will. That is our commitment to truth and transparency in government, you can still count on Carolina journal for investigations into government spending revelations about boondoggles and vetting of corruption. No permission to shine the light on what North Carolina government and the bureaucrats who run it are doing in your name and with your money will never wane and because of that our reach and influence are growing through all of our distribution outlets we reach more than 1 million N. Carolinians every month so make sure you stay informed. Read the monthly print edition of Carolina journal.

Then check in several times a day, Carolina that's where you'll find fresh stories, opinion pieces and updates on government politics and your money. Carolina journal. We hold government accountable to you and welcome back to Carolina journal radio I'm Donna Martinez.

While it may feel like we just finished an election but actually the 2018. Contests are now only a few months away with the primary scheduled for May 8 the general fort November 6 now with the candidate filing. Having closed have a good sense of how the races for the North Carolina Gen. assembly have shaped up. Becky Gray is senior vice president with the John Locke foundation and she has been following the filings and is here to give us some of the highlights. Becky, welcome back.

Thank you. One of the most fascinating things about this is that every single district 170 170 seats in the general assembly actually have candidates were gonna be one applicant indent amaranth and every single one.

This is the first time it ever happened.

I started keeping records of this in 1925. So were not sure if it happened before 1925. We don't have any records on it. We don't have it hasn't happened since it just phenomenal and as she said this is fascinating stories here annotate real kudos go to the head of the Republican Party and the Democratic Party for finding these people recruiting these candidates is also been a tremendous amount of work done at the district level in the county level the local level. So coming.

Kudos to these folks who have gotten out and in really got people interested and filled all the St. I think it's phenomenal. I'm really looking forward to this really existed to be a dynamic, exciting, raucous election cycle. I can't wait and really filled with energy. There's been a lot of talk and even some polling already done about which side is more energized to get out and vote and this seems to indicate both sides.

It sure does that again that's usually wins in this you know the real winners are innovative us the voters because we can have choices and have a lot of discussion on really know what these people running for and what the different sides represent. In addition, Donna, in addition to all these candidates we have on the Republican and Democrats have more libertarians than ever running. There's not one in every single race that they are more than we've ever had before.

So again another voice other ideas being discussed. So it seems like people really can have choices across the ideological spectrum. Exactly these districts are lazy able to choose what it is they want to see in their state legislature wet wet policies and ideas advanced in a course.

What we are having is a think tank and people who really like ideas and a lot of discussion that's hopefully what we can have a lot of town halls a lot of discussion within these districts, a lot of back-and-forth said that we really see what the different candidates with the different parties what the different I deals are there out there and I think again the voters are going be the winners in this do we know if all of these races are to be really competitive. A lot of them probably not. Some of them and we've heard a lot about gerrymandering in the redistricting and a lot of confusion leading up to this. I'm in some of them there very strong Republican districts, but there is a Democrat running in and vice versa. Where think the real value in this is, no matter who wins the race is that there's another voice in the race in 2016 Donna 44 House seats were already one at the close of filing 13 Senate sate said there was no competition and there was no alternative voice and again 44 House 813 Senate seats in the last go-round that we had what we have now we can at least half if it's a strong let let's just say in a Democrat district with a long-standing popular incumbent in that district.

There probably is not going away on companies can have to answer some questions there's going to be somebody's going to be challenging their record asking them questions, there's gonna be another voice to be heard bringing some other ideas to those voters. How those letters ultimately decide will say that I think that's the real value of this Becky is you've taken a look at the list of candidates and there are a number of names that have popped out in the top of the list is a gentleman named Bob. Joe sounds familiar.

Why would Barbara just sound familiar and looks like he's running well he has in this is kind of interesting. One of the things that we sing with the changes in the districts in the court cases in the redistricting cases.

There was so much confusion. Donna did with this election cycle. They have waived the requirement that a candidate has to live in the district for a year.

That's been the rule and all these other elections, but again because it's been so much confusion they wait that.

So, Bob Rocha served in the Senate.

You may remember him. He was sort of the architect of the tax reforms of 2013. Very powerful and very influential very loud very well. No megaphone or shall we say and and full disclosure, Bob Bob Ritchie was a friend.

He represented the Senate in the district in the Matthews condyle area. There is a new open district in Iredell County on Lake Norman area and so Bob Riccio saw this opportunity he believes rented an apartment in Lake Norman and has found a run for this district, so he St. Bob reach different district different set of voters is obviously decided he doesn't think he's done yet make policy in North Carolina and obviously he would have to win that race to get back in to be here. Believe me, we will be hearing from Bob reach out in a desperate ideas in the voters in that district. I think were gonna have a good idea of what he what he would bring to the table and whether or not they want him to represent them and he popped out on the list but back in the interesting thing is that if you look at the list of candidate filings. There are number of names that are not on the list anymore.

We have some folks who are tiring. A couple of pretty well-known people.

We do into nice, noteworthy representative making the show whose represented the Durham area.

Donahue served in the North Carolina Gen. something for 44 years and crying just unbelievable. You know what he saying what he's participated in and making sure was also one who has been in leadership positions. He was the chairman of the appropriations committee for a Democrat here's a Democrat.

Yes, I'm also very active in the legislative Black Caucus leadership position there, so it's a real loss to the Gen. assembly with everything that he has done and brought in his leadership over the years, and then another one long serving also tremendous contributions John Bloss to his represented the greens for a district and has not been there quite as long as representative Michelle has been is been there for quite some time. So as of two of the oldest serving in this turnover this churn every two years where there are group of legislators who always retire there. There are some who always choose not to serve again this is not unusual. I don't think that there anymore legislators retiring this go-round on that is particularly noteworthy with these two. And then there's others. Chad barefoot from White County is retiring on some folks from the Mecklenburg County some changes. They are Beverly oral Angela Bryant from the northeastern part of the states have seen some changes. We will miss those who have served and served admirably, but we are certainly welcoming new faces and new idea as soon as is all good exactly him so the voters will have a very interesting options in those areas where those long serving members are now retiring ultimately at Becky. This is a political contest. Of course, and so right now the Republicans have super majorities in both the North Carolina House and the North Carolina Senate but in a very influential position. The Democrats however have been very strong in their campaign saying they're going to break those super majorities ultimately how could this shakeout with Republicans and controller Democrats.

Perhaps I'm getting facts about you a lot can happen between now and November I we don't know what's gonna happen. Part of this is money that's raised a note that the leadership in both the House and the Senate. Both parties are out raising money to support these candidates to get messages out in another thing a lot of people talk about what is the trump effect going to be how is the things that are happening in Washington. How is that going to affect these North Carolina legislative rices and you already saying the top factor where some Republicans are attaching themselves to some of the trump ideas on the Democrats are trying to tie candidates to trumps apron strings, totes can be a really interesting next several Becky greatest senior vice president with the John Locke foundation is all the time we have for the show. Thanks for listening on behalf of Mitch Kovach nine Donna Martinez join us again next week for more Carolina journal radio Carolina journal radio is a program of the John Locke to learn more about the John Locke foundation including donations support programs, Carolina journal radio send email to development John Locke done 66 JL left info 166-553-4636 Carolina journal radio station airline's remark and maintain Carolina run system. All opinions expressed on this program nearly station.

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