Higher Power Bills for North Carolinians are Coming!

Higher power for North Carolina consumers are not a maybe – they are a certainty. That is unless the legislature changes direction. A change in direction does not appear likely as they get ready to pass Senate Bill 75 as explained in this Carolina Journal article. This bill is a follow on to the horrendous Senate Bill 3 of 2007 which added a “renewable energy” requirement for NC power producers. Renewable energy means more expensive energy.

The current Senate Bill 75 is just a way of taking a bad bill and making it seem less bad. But this bill has all of the worst aspects of lobbying and “rent Seeking” and at the end of the day people of NC will pay for this bill. It favors a type of equipment made by a particular manufacturer that the power companies are not interested in using unless they can shift the cost. SB 75 will help them do that. Back in the 1980′s I participated in CP&L’s demand reduction program because they offered me a financial incentive to allow them to interrupt some of my use of electricity. When they no longer needed to reduce demand (new generating capacity became available) they ended the program.

Instead of passing more government interference in the marketplace, this legislature should look at repealing the bad parts SB-3.  House Bill 431 by Rep. George Cleveland (R-Onslow) is a start. The bill needs some work but it is the direction a “conservative” legislature should be taking, not more interference like SB-75.

So when your power bills go up, remember the legislative action that caused it and the legislative action that did not fix it…

People of NC Agree with Voter Photo ID – AGAIN!

A recent poll out of Elon University confirms that North Carolinians “overwhelmingly support” voter photo ID legislation.  According to the News and Observer, “The Elon University Poll found that 75 percent support voter ID provisions in a bill being considered in the legislature and 80 percent think it is fair.”

The Elon poll corroborates Civitas Institute polls that consistently reveal huge support for voter photo ID.  In the December 2010 Civitas poll, 84 percent of respondents supported the idea. The breakdown of the Civitas Poll shows 96 percent Republicans, 86 percent unaffiliated voters and 73 percent of Democrats support a voter photo ID.  The breakdown further reveals that 89 percent of white voters and 68 percent of African-American voters support voter photo ID.  Civitas Polls and Elon University Polls differ in that Civitas only polls registered voters while Elon polls residents of North Carolina.

While opponents, extremely liberal groups (including the State Board of Elections and mainstream media outlets), want everyone to believe this is a partisan and racist issue, the people of North Carolina know better. The people of our State know that it only makes sense (C O M M O N – S E N S E) to ask someone for a photo ID before giving them a ballot.

Tom Ross Revealed: An Agent of Far-Left Change

“We want to be a change agent in the state,” Tom Ross told Todd Cohen in an interview for the Business Journal of Charlotte back in 2002.

And so he was.

Flying in the face of all the noise and cries of “besmirching” one of North Carolina’s great leaders coming from NC Policywatch’s Rob Schofield, Civitas recently discovered an article detailing the fundamental changes enacted by the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation under Ross’s tenure.

Cohen’s article describes “sweeping changes in grantmaking” of Z. Smith Reynolds, an ideological shift in North Carolina’s largest philanthropic organization that relegated its traditional grant recipients (historical preservation, health care, construction and capital campaigns, etc.) in favor of more “progressive” organizations. These new beneficiaries would hail from the realms of “social, economic, and environmental justice.”

With the then newly selected Tom Ross at the helm, Z. Smith Reynolds took a sharp left turn and became actively engaged in the practice of “backing progressive public policy.” Now he is to be the next UNC System President.

John Hood of the John Locke Foundation summarized the implications of this shift to left-wing activism saying the Z. Smith Reynolds “is going to give less money to charities providing direct services to the public and more money to public policy charities of the left-wing variety.”

Hood added, “I suspect that the previous generations of the Reynolds family who engaged so successfully in our capitalist system would be horrified to find how much their money will be used to subvert that very system.”

So much for being a “mainstream group, funding mainstream causes,” as Mr. Schofield described Z. Smith Reynolds under Ross’s administration. Ross played a lead role in diverting the focus of Z. Smith Reynolds from a well respected philanthropy foundation to a sweetheart of liberal activist groups of all flavors.

Exlcuding Unaffiliateds a Bad Idea

It appears that there are some within the NC GOP that want to go back to the days of excluding unaffiliated voters from the party’s primary elections.  This would be a bad idea for a number of reasons.

1. The numbers of voters registering as unaffiliated is exploding.  Just in the past month, new unaffiliated voter registrations were 3.5x that of Republicans and Democrats combined.

2. As Republican registration has plateaued, there is a growing need to for it to appeal to unaffiliated voters to win elections.  If unaffiliated voters are excluded from the primary process it allows the Democrats to begin building a relationship and appealing to those voters earlier.  If the Democratic primary is open to unaffiliated voters, Democrats will pursue those votes and unaffiliateds could begin to form a comfort level in voting for Democratic candidates, a relationship that Republicans would not have.  Thus, Republicans would have more ground to make up with unaffiliated voters when they really need them — in Novembers.

Just look at the numbers — only 31.75% of voters are registered Republican.  Republicans must get 18.25% of the vote from somewhere else.  The most logical place being unaffiliated voters.

3. They don’t change election outcomes.  McCain didn’t win NC the NC primary because of unaffiliateds  — neither did McCrory win the gubernatorial primary because of them.  The unaffiliateds that would choose to vote in Republican primaries aren’t all that different ideologically from Republicans.  In a poll we conducted in April 2008, before the primary election, we asked unaffiliated voters if they would be choosing to participate in the Republican or Democratic primary.  Those that chose the Republican primary were just as conservative ideologically as registered Republicans.

4. A significant portion of the growth of unaffiliated voters over the past two years are disaffected Republicans fed up with their party.  These are people the Republican party need to bring back into the fold, not push further away.

5. Roughly 40% of unaffiliated voters consider themselves conservative, according to our polling.  Those are going to be the voters who choose to participate in the Republican primary, and the ones that would be excluded under the proposal.

6. Unaffiliateds represent a very small portion of the primary vote.  In the 2004, 2006, and 2008 primaries unaffiliateds comprised somewhere between 8-12% of the voters in the Republican primary.  Fact is, unaffiliateds generally don’t turn out to vote in primaries.  While there may be more unaffiliated voters overall, they are still less likely that a registered R or D to vote in a primary.

I’m all for electing people to office that will uphold conservative values, but alienating a very large (and growing) segment of voters is not the way to win elections.  Excluding unaffiliateds may actually be a way to for Republicans to ensure they are a minority party in North Carolina for the foreseeable future.

McHenry Hunting ACORN

North Carolina Congressman Patrick McHenry has ACORN in his sights and and is readying to take the shot.  At the Sept. 30 hearing conducted by the House Financial Services Committee, as reported by not by CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, New York Times or the Washington Post but by BigGovernment.com, he was on the hunt.

McHenry had a union boss on the hot seat at the meeting from ACORN’s big labor partner ; the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).  Anna Burger flatly stated that SEIU had cut all ties with ACORN.  McHenry continued to press her for details:

“What was the extent of your financial ties with ACORN?” the congressman asked.

“I will get that information for you for the record,” she said. Called the “queen of labor” by some, Burger is an officer of George Soros’s Democracy Alliance, a left-wing billionaire donors’ collaborative that has steered funds to ACORN. She also chairs the powerful labor federation known as Change to Win.

So the cozy relationship between SEIU and ACORN is over?  Which group wanted to protect its reputation? ACORN or SEIU?

ACORN has long used public sector unions to shakedown politicians to increase their funding and grow their membership.  The election of former Congressman Rod Blagojevich as the Governor of Chicago Illinois is a classic example of the con game run by ACORN.

The unholy alliance between ACORN, Big Labor and Darth Soros is just beginning to be seen in public with the efforts of leaders like McHenry and California Congressman Darrell Issa, the blogs of the right while the mainstream media refuses to run any story connected to ACORN until the Congress symbolically votes to cut their federal funds.

Read the whole sorted affair at the American Spectator Blog.