-December 2, 2013-
3:00 -- Is it unethical for Rep. Tim Moffitt to publish a newspaper outling all the great things his Republican Party passed in the NC Legislature?
4:00 -- Americans don't trust each other any more. Why? Plus Art Pope and William Barber exchange words.
5:00 -- Kevin King joins us to talk about his grassroots organizing work on college campuses. Plus, Milton Friedman debates Frances Fox Piven.
-December 3, 2013
3:00 -- Pete offers NC Democratic candidate recruiters the opportunity to come on the show. They chicken out.
4:00 -- The rise of the administrative state and why budget battles will be the focal point now.
5:00 -- The Hobby Lobby lawsuit over the Affordable Care Act, plus should chimpanzees get legal "personhood" status.
-December 4, 2013
3:00 -- A coup on the Mecklenburg County Commission might make it easier for South Asheville to de-annex from the city. Plus, a Hindu guy is mad at a local brewer for naming a beer Shiva.
4:00 -- Jake Frankel from Mountain Xpress joins us to talk about the latest edition on news stands. Plus, Buncombe County Commissioners say they want to reduce the carbon footprint by 80%.
5:00 -- Kurth Schlichter, columnist at Townhall, says liberals have to lie. Plus, human cheese.
-December 5, 2013
3:00 -- Fast food workers protest for an increase in the federal minimum wage.
4:00 -- Ford O'Connell, GOP strategist and former McCain-Palin adviser, talks about what the Republican Party needs to do to win the Presidential race in 2016 - including "getting over the fact that Reagan is dead."
5:00 -- It turns out President Obama did know his illegal alien uncle living in Boston. Plus, the Democrats are desperate to get everyone to focus on income inequality.
-December 6, 2013
3:00 -- Why the Affordable Care Act is costing Democrats support among women.
4:00 -- Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) dismantles a liberal professor's defense of presidential overreach. Plus, Rev. William Barber's comments after getting convicted on 2 of 3 counts for his Moral Monday protests.
5:00 -- More from Rev. Barber. Plus, the Olympic torch lights a man on fire in Siberia and the NC lottery is now offering subscriptions!
Asheville City Councilman Gordon Smith predicts Buncombe County Republicans will hire "vigilantes" to try to prevent people from voting in upcoming elections.
Here's what Councilman Smith posted this morning:
@arrington13 Yes. I imagine the BCGOP will have hired vigilantes in every precinct to harass and discourage voters.— Gordon Smith (@gordondsmith) August 19, 2013
Oh! I wonder if these guys might be available:
Don't worry, I'll spare you the obvious "Can you imagine if a conservative said something similar" double-standard argument. It goes without saying that Democrats enjoy special protections in the media. Being a Democrat means rarely ever having to say you're sorry.
New voting rule
But what Councilman Smith is referencing is a provision of the newly-adopted NC voting overhaul law that allows for more challenges at polling sites.
Here's how it has worked in the past:
Political parties stationed volunteer observers at polling sites to monitor things. But if an observer saw some suspicious activity, the observer could not formally challenge a voter unless the observer lived in the polling precinct. Some times, observers who complained that suspicious activities were being ignored by the precinct judges got thrown off the site by those judges (often of the opposite political party).
The newly-adopted law allows for more observers.
Here's a fake example.
Let's say Precinct #1 is a heavily Democratic precinct - with 99.9% of the voters registered as Democrats. The county Republican Party wants to station an observer in this precinct (along with every other precinct in the county).
But finding a Republican who lives in Precinct #1 is going to be tough, because 99.9% of the registrered voters are Democrats. So, the GOP will likely have to get a volunteer from outside Precinct #1.
This means the observer cannot challenge a voter who might show up a dozen times to vote fraudulently.
Under the new law, though, the same GOP observer can challenge that dozen-time voter Precinct #1 - as long as the observer lives in the same county. Not the same precinct.
This makes sense to reasonable people. We may not know everyone in our home precincts enough to challenge a neighbor, but we might recognize the same person coming in two or three times over the course of a day.
Councilman Smith is running for re-election to City Council and has been focusing much of his campaign on the NC General Assembly. It makes sense from a political strategy standpoint, as the Democratic base has been dispirited:
Former Gov. Jim Hunt delivered a pep talk to grassroots leaders of the state’s beleaguered Democratic Party on Saturday night, where he emphasized the basics of winning elections. Hunt told the crowd at a reception named partly in his honor to appeal to independent voters, run good candidates and raise money.
Motivating the base is essential in all elections, particularly in a local election cycle like 2013.
And in a liberal city like Asheville, running against the GOP is a no-brainer. The nice part of having a Republican-controlled legislature is that local Democrats can keep the fear-mongering more local. No need to paint some City Council opponent as a John Boehner clone.
But the real concern for Democrats is 2014.
Already, we're seeing outside money being used to support US Sen. Kay Hagan, who is also using the anti-NC General Assembly line in her campaign materials.
With a traditionally lower turnout in a non-presidential election, Democrats need a fired up base if they hope to win back some NC General Assembly seats and keep Hagan in office.
But Hagan is no Barack Obama, so how will Democrats rally blacks?
Two words: "voter suppression."
The 2013 local races are just the opening act to the main attraction.