Pictured: Moral Monday

CHAPEL HILL – We’ve heard from the outspoken Moral Monday protesters as they gather in Raleigh each week to rally against the policies of the Republican-led General Assembly. WCHL’s D.G. Martin spoke with Carter Wrenn and Gary Pearce, two experts on opposite ends of the political spectrum, to get their take on the protests.

Together the two run a blog together called “Talking About Politics.”  Wrenn, who’s a Republican, and Pearce, who’s a Democrat, met in 1984 during the epic U.S. Senate battle between Jesse Helms and Jim Hunt. Wrenn worked for Helms and Pearce worked for Hunt.

Wrenn said Moral Monday leader and NAACP State Chapter President Reverend William Barber has become the face of the Democratic Party in North Carolina.

“I don’t think Moral Monday has contributed any sort of sensible political debate. I don’t want to sound harsh, but William Barber is pure demagogue. This isn’t a debate, this is a political rant,” Wrenn said.

Wrenn said Barber has used the strategy of “out-howling” everyone to get his point across.

“The theory is that as that howl reaches through the ether and the internet and people hear somebody hollering, that’s helping them a lot politically. I’m sort of inclined to think that hearing that sort of hollering, you shut down; you just block it out,” Wrenn said.

Pearce however felt differently about Barber’s leadership.

“One man’s demagogue is another man’s leader with courage and conviction. At least he’s had the courage to stand up and say some things, and he has hit a responsive chord,” Pearce said.

Pearce said this mid-year swing in momentum is a positive sign for the state’s Democrats.

“There’s a mobilizing, energizing element to this. Remember in 2010 all the energy and protests were coming from the Tea Party and then we had a very Tea Party dominated election in 2010. I’m hoping this energy translates to next year,” Pierce said.

These comments were made during the recording of Who’s Talking with D.G. Martin. To hear more from Wrenn and Pearce, tune in for the full show Saturday and Sunday at 6:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 11:00 p.m. on 97.9 FM WCHL and Chapelboro.com.