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Morning Roundup: McCrory cruising on campaign trail, Dalton cash-strapped

North Carolina’s two candidates for governor began the final week of the campaign a study in contrasts.

Democratic Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, the state’s lieutenant governor, was on the attack and raising money, hoping a final surge would allow him to close what the polls suggest is a wide gap with his GOP opponent. Meanwhile, a buoyant Republican Pat McCrory, the former Charlotte mayor, hit a diner and a local GOP headquarters and warned his supporters against overconfidence. Full story here.

More political headlines:

--Gov. Bev Perdue is sitting on $1.2 million as Democrat Walter Dalton faces a 6-to-1 cash deficit to Republican Pat McCrory

Walter Dalton raises a third as much money as his Republican rival

Democratic candidate Walter Dalton raised $1.4 million in the third quarter, far less than his Republican rival's $5 million.

He started the general election with $714,000 in the bank after a primary race depleted his coffers. All together, Dalton's total receipts this election cycle -- $3.9 million -- don't even match Pat McCrory's final three and a half months. McCrory's total this election: $11.6 million.

Former Gov. Hunt: N.C. future is bright, with Obama at helm

Former Gov. Jim Hunt authored an opinion piece in today's News & Observer that shines an optimitic light on North Carolina's future and endorses President Barack Obama as the one who can help make it happen.

Hunt describes campaigning this year and hearing stories that "give me hope that our future will be bright." 

Morning Roundup: Inside the campaign vote operations, McCrory haunted by curse

In politics, this is known as the ground game. It is the most old-fashioned part of politics – identifying your supporters and making sure they get to the polls.

It was Obama’s superior ground game that enabled the Illinois senator to squeak by Republican Sen. John McCain in North Carolina by 14,000 votes in 2008. And if the president is going to have a chance to carry the state again next Tuesday against Romney he will have to depend heavily on the get-out-the vote effort. Take a look inside the Democrat and Republican operations.

More political headlines:

--Can Pat McCrory break Charlotte's 92-year curse?

--The heated contest for state school superintendent had another log thrown on the fire with an email from Republican John Tedesco to his supporters that includes claims against incumbent Democrat June Atkinson that she said are false.

Morning Roundup: Sunday voting highlights key constituency this election

Sunday voting is a relatively recent electoral phenomenon that is increasingly embraced by African American churches, organizing get-out-the-vote caravans dubbed “Souls to the Polls.” Sunday voting also is increasingly targeted by critics in this state and elsewhere who want to see the practice banned.

Full story here. And read about how churchgoers are a key constituency this election.

More political headlines below.

'Stay strong, Pat' conservative group says in new campaign mailers

Americans for Prosperity is spending $130,000 to send a half million mailers touting Republican gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory just days before the election.

The two fliers (see pdf links below) hit two issues that aren't being discussed much on the campaign trail: medical malpractice and public financing of campaigns.


Civitas poll: Romney, Obama locked in tight race in North Carolina

UPDATED: The conservative Civitias Institute sponsored a poll last week that found the presidential race in North Carolina essentially tied. 

The survey of likely voters released Friday gave Republican Mitt Romney 48 percent and President Barack Obama 47 percent, a one-point lead within the four-point margin of error. The Civitas poll echoes a more recent one released Thursday from the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, which showed the race knotted at 48 percent.

The poll was conducted by National Resarch Inc. from Oct. 20-21 and reached 600 likely voters.

Elizabeth City paper endorses Dalton, UNC-CH student paper picks McCrory

Two more newspaper editorial board endorsements split their picks between Democrat Walter Dalton and Republican Pat McCrory.

The opinion shop at The Daily Advance in Elizabeth City endorsed Dalton. He will better stand up for rural parts of the state and serve as a veto threat to what is likely to be another Republican-controlled legislature," the newspaper's editorial board wrote.

Gov. Perdue begins to prepare for her exit

Gov. Bev Perdue isn't wasting time preparing for her exit. Her office sent a memo to her two potential successors -- Democrat Walter Dalton and Republican Pat McCrory -- this week saying she is beginning to prepare for the transition of power.

The governor directed her cabinet agencies to prepare a memo that outlines the agency structure, staff, budgets, programs and serves and boards and commissions. The deadline: Nov. 7 -- the day after the election.

"My goal is to assist the governor-elect in a smooth and orderly transition to better serve the people of North Carolina," she wrote.

Morning Roundup: If elected, McCrory could play role in Duke Energy case

Duke Energy’s most recent move to delay filing a rate case with the N.C. Utilities Commission will avoid the Charlotte utility having two complex cases before the commission simultaneously. But some advocacy groups say Duke may be buying time for the state’s new governor to alter the makeup of the commission.

Republican Pat McCrory has emerged as the gubernatorial front-runner. McCrory is a former mayor of Charlotte and also a 29-year veteran employee of Duke Energy, who could fill three of the seven spots and a chairman with 8 months of this election. Full story here.

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