Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Buck Newton v. Josh Stein for NC Attorney General, guest blogging:


Buck Newton (Tea Party/Republican): and Buck Newton NC on Facebook

Newton graduated from Appalachian State University (sorry about that) with a political science degree and went immediately to work for Jesse Helms. Newton got his seat in the NC Senate during the 2010 Tea Party wave and has held onto it until announcing in late 2015 that he'd be leaving to run for Attorney General.

He made headlines in 2016 by loudly proclaiming his support ("keep our state straight!" he shouted to a rally in Raleigh) for HB2, the "bathroom bill" which has so tarnished the state in more ways than one, and for helping get it passed in a special session of the NC General Assembly.

His support for HB2 prompted this post on a Facebook thread:
I knew Buck Newton when he was in college. He was always very opinionated, angry, looked down on others, always saw things in simple terms, always quick to jump to conclusions, always claimed things were "common sense". He was always very judgmental and used bully tactics on others to make his opinion appear correct. He was always full of confidence based on simple, black and white views of the world. Several of us thought he was an idiot because of his lack of ability to see and understand what was beneath the surface of issues. This bill/law [HB2] sounds exactly like something college-kid Buck would do. Apparently, he has not grown much. There are many smart and wise people in North Carolina who see God's creation as it truly is - a very complicated marvel, so it is absolutely shocking that such a person of low understanding could rise to such power based on such a superficial foundation. Shocking. At one point in time, the earth being flat was "common sense", blacks being inferior was "common sense"... And, here we are... again.
Not for nothing did Buck Newton receive his perfect score from the American Conservative Union. He has voted to prohibit wind farms, to repeal the state's recycling program, to increase sales taxes on working families, and he has a 100% rating from the NRA (among many other things).

Josh Stein (Democrat): and Josh Stein for NC Attorney General on Facebook

Following the Tea Party takeover of the NC General Assembly in 2010, I had a hero in the NC Senate, and it was Senator Josh Stein.

Stein graduated from Chapel Hill High School and lives in Raleigh. He earned his undergraduate degree at Dartmouth College and went on to Harvard Law School and the Kennedy School of Government. He has worked for the Self-Help Credit Union in Durham and the United States Senate. Prior to serving in the General Assembly, Stein spent eight years as North Carolina's Deputy Attorney General for Consumer Protection.

He was elected to the NC Senate in 2008 and has been reelected three more times. When Roy Cooper, his former boss in the Attorney General's office, announced he would be running for governor in 2016, Stein announced for the Attorney General's job. He's immensely qualified, in both character and training.

Stein became my hero in 2013 when he stood up in the NC Senate and denounced the Republican budget proposal which was robbing from public education to pay tax-cut dividends to the one percent. He's also been a champion of abortion rights, and he argued forcefully against the monster election law rewrite that has now been overturned by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals as unconstitutional.

While the North Carolina General Assembly was descending into Tea Party darkness, Josh Stein's light for justice and fair play shone bright on YouTube and gave many of us out here in the world hope that we could turn it all around eventually. Stein is still very much a part of that hope.

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