Civitas Institute Poll: McCrory, Cooper Virtually Tied

In the latest Civitas Institute Poll, Governor Pat McCrory and Democratic opponent state Attorney General Roy Cooper are neck-and-neck for the 2016 N.C. Governor’s election.

When 600 registered voting North Carolinians were asked who they would vote for if the gubernatorial elections were to be held today, 44 percent selected McCrory, 43 percent casted their vote on Cooper.

“Roy Cooper is a well known figure,” said Civitas Institute president Francis De Luca. “In terms of possible negatives, he probably has a lot less than Governor McCrory.”

De Luca attributes Cooper’s favorability to McCrory’s recent hits in the media during the session of the General Assembly. McCrory still clinches the one point lead, and De Luca also says he is surprised to see the numbers so close.

This month’s poll also shows the closing gap between Governor McCrory’s approval and disapproval percentages, with a 48-47 lead of voters approving of his job in the N.C. General Assembly, compared to April’s numbers showing 50-44 approving.

This is the first poll of this N.C. Governor’s election race done by the Civitas Institute.

Kinnaird’s Seat Likely To Be Filled Within 30 Days

Pictured: Ellie Kinnaird 

CHAPEL HILL – Following Ellie Kinnaird’s resignation Monday, questions remain of who will fill her seat in the state senate and how long the process will take.

Chair of the 4th Congressional District, Ted Benson, will preside over the meeting of the 23rd Senatorial District Executive Committee, the group charged with nominating someone to serve the remainder of Kinnaird’s term, which is up in 2014.

“Neither [state] statute nor the [N.C. Democratic Party’s] Plan of Organization has a firm time limit on that process, but I would hope to have it done within 30 days,” Benson said.

He said the Committee meets only in rare circumstances such as this. After the committee nominates a replacement, Benson said it is state law that N.C. Governor Pat McCrory must formally appoint the Committee’s nominee.

Benson said he will have to give five day’s notice to the Committee members once the date for the meeting is set.

The 23rd Senatorial District Executive Committee is made up of four Democratic officials, two from Orange and two from Chatham County. Samantha Cabe and Wanda Hunter will represent Orange County.

Matt Hughes, Chair of the Orange County Democratic Party, explained that Orange County will hold 446 votes and Chatham will hold 212.

“Those votes are weighted based on population. The counties receive one vote for every 300 people residing in their county, and that gives Orange County about two-thirds of the vote,” Hughes said.

Benson said it is his job to moderate the meeting, but he will not vote.

According to a statement on the Orange County Democratic Party’s website, the group said Monday, “The Orange County Democratic Party will treat filling this vacancy much like a primary election. We will be fair and impartial to all candidates and allow the process to work.”

Benson said registered Democrats over the age of 25, residing in the 23rd District, are eligible for consideration to fill Kinnaird’s vacancy. He clarified that they must go through the process with their respective presiding Democratic Parties.

Before a replacement is named, though, Benson said one of Chatham County’s Executive District Committee slots is currently vacant and has to be filled.

Jan Nichols, Chair of the Chatham County Democratric Party, said Monday that an emergency meeting is planned for Thursday.

“Thursday the Executive Committee of the Chatham County Democratic Party will meet, and we will meet for the purpose of electing somebody to that committee. We will then submit that name to the state party,” Nichols said.

Both Benson and Hughes said Kinnaird served the Democrat Party of North Carolina well during her nine terms as State Senator.

“I tremendously respect both her service and her decision to focus her energies on voter registration and counteract the most difficult aspects of the Voter ID Law that was recently passed,” Benson said.

Hughes echoed the sentiment, adding, “I’m pretty sure we will have a champion of the people who will be the people’s senator as Senator Kinnaird was, and I look forward to working with that person.”

If you’re interested in putting your name forward for Orange County or would like to know more about the process, contact Chair Matt Hughes at or 919-537-9568.

For Chatham County, contact, or visit the Chatham County Democratic Party’s website.

Protesters Gear Up For 3 Moral Mondays Across NC

Moral Monday in Raleigh; Photo by Rachel Nash

CHAPEL HILL – The N.C. NAACP’s Moral Monday Movement is spreading to three locations across North Carolina on August 19. Rallies are happening in Charlotte, Burnsville, and Manteo in the Outer Banks. This new series of protests comes two weeks after the “Mountain Moral Monday” in Asheville drew record crowds and surpassed totals for the past demonstrations at the General Assembly in Raleigh.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that police estimated more than 5,000 people had gathered in Pack Square Park for the Mountain Moral Monday rally by 6 p.m. Later estimates doubled that amount.

During the 13 weeks of protesting in the capital city, thousands attended the demonstrations, and more than 900 people were arrested while rallying against the Republican-led legislature. The protesters say recently passed legislation is “regressive” and has made attacks against education, social and economic equality, and voting rights. The movement has captured national attention from media outlets such as the New York Times, MSNBC, CNN and Fox News, to name a few.

“We are traveling across the state with a moral and constitutional vision, mobilizing and calling on North Carolinians from every background to action, from the coast to the mountains, because the [Governor Pat] McCrory, [House of Representative Speaker Thom] Tillis and [Senate President Pro Tempore] Phil Berger Agenda is trying to turn this state 180 degrees in the wrong direction,” said Rev. William Barber, NAACP State Chapter President and Moral Monday protest leader, in a statement. “This trio and their extreme conservative supermajority have passed the most regressive and immoral legislation this state has seen in decades, or perhaps even longer.”

The NAACP and other groups hosting the protests promise to go to all 13 of North Carolina’s congressional districts in honor of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington on August 28.



Burnsville, NC

Monday, August 19, 2013

5:30 pm, Burnsville Town Square



Charlotte, NC

Monday, August 19, 2013

5pm, Marshall Park in downtown Charlotte



Manteo, NC

Monday, August 19, 2013

Roanoke IslandFestivalPark in downtown Manteo

Doors open at 4:00 pm and program begins at 6:00 pm

Asheville To Host ‘Mountain Moral Monday’

Pictured: Moral Monday March; Photo by Rachel Nash

ASHEVILLE -Downtown Raleigh will be a little more quiet as the Moral Monday movement has hit to the road for a tour of the state, in protest of legislation passed by N.C. Governor Pat McCrory and the Republican-led General Assembly. Led by the state NAACP, the first stop is Asheville for Mountain Moral Monday. Reverend William Barber will be speaking at the event.

During the 13 weeks of protesting in the capital city, thousands attended the demonstrations and 925 people were arrested. The movement has captured national attention from media outlets such as the New York Times, MSNBC, CNN and Fox News, to name a few.

The NAACP also will also hold demonstrations in each of North Carolina’s 13 Congressional Districts in honor of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington on August 28.