THE ISSUES

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TAX RELIEF 

I believe in economic fairness. I believe everyone should pay their fair share. I believe no one gets to pay zero. We must work to ensure that lower income taxpayers do not have a higher effective tax rate; close loopholes in the tax code preventing corporations from paying little or no tax; and insist on equity in the taxation of capital gains and dividends to wages, salaries, and self-employment income.

I support tax reform legislation that benefit rural America, which include entrepreneurs and rural residents in all economic groups, to enhance the vitality of Nash County's economy. 

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CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM

Our Constitution reads “We the People,” and not “we the wealthy.” We must reverse the U.S.

Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. It is disheartening for me to see “dark money” enter our

local political races and divide entire communities as the very people behind these campaign finance

efforts don’t live in, attend ball games, eat at local restaurants or worship in our churches. The voices

of voters throughout eastern North Carolina are being drowned out by the wealthiest donors. Citizens

United allows unlimited and undisclosed campaign contributions from corporations and billionaires.

We must pass meaningful campaign finance reform, so that the biggest corporations or the wealthiest

Americans don’t decide who represents us.

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EDUCATION

My father always said, “Education is a type of salvation. It can’t get you to heaven, but sure can make

getting around earth easier.” Success starts in the home and then very quickly finds itself in the

classroom. I will continue to work on legislation that ensures when students graduate from high

school, they possess the skills and tools to succeed throughout life. Our public school system needs

to match our UNC and community college system. I believe there are several ways we can make

immediate progress on all our education goals:

 

  • Supporting and not attacking public schools and public-school teachers

  • Increasing our investment in early learning programs like Head Start

  • Supporting state efforts to transform the worst performing schools within any community

  • Offering affordable technical, undergraduate, and graduate education, through community

  • colleges, colleges, and universities

 

State per-pupil spending is 8.1% below 2008 pre-recession levels, adjusting for inflation. What is your position on funding education?

 

A multi-year funding strategy must be implemented that raises statewide per-pupil spending to $7500. Subsidy must be in place for school districts that do not have supplemental funding due to considerably lower property tax or sales tax. Education is the primary conduit out of poverty. We currently pay more to keep residents poor than we do to change their trajectory

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WORKFORCE

Have you noticed that almost everyone seems to be hiring? Have you also noticed that

there are no signs outside of these establishments reading, “Lower my Taxes”? As I speak with

business owners throughout our state and even the country, the single biggest issue they face is

having a well-trained workforce. Therefore, I spent three years as a Commissioner with My Future NC

with thought leaders around our state in the development of the North Carolina Educational

Attainment Goal. I will continue to work to close gaps in postsecondary attainment, promote

alignment between educational programming and industry needs, and improve the quality of

 

educational opportunities for everyone in rural eastern North Carolina. Education is the engine that

will drive breakthrough technological advancements in energy, in health care, and in tackling virtually

every challenge we face today and in the future.  And it is in our classrooms that we must start to

teach the great diversity of skills the next generation will need to thrive in the new economy.