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From right to far-right: Cross-section of conservatives makes fiscal cliff demands

Veteran North Carolina Republican political strategist Marc Rotterman, a senior fellow at the John Locke Foundation, is one of 38 prominent conservatives who have signed a petition making demands about the fiscal cliff negotiations.

Ellmers appointed to energy, commerce committee

U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers has been named to the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

It’s a big appointment for the second-term Republican congresswoman from Dunn. She was re-elected on Nov. 6.

Committee chairman announced her selection Thursday night. Ellmers issued a statement on Friday:

Morning Roundup: N.C. companies prepare for the fiscal cliff

Some North Carolina companies are joining a growing number of U.S. firms paying out early dividends before the end of the year, as tax increases on dividends are seen as likely in 2013.

Dividend tax rates were reduced to 15 percent under the Bush-era tax cuts. But that rate is scheduled to expire in January, and taxes would likely then rise – although no one knows exactly how much yet. Full story here.

More political headlines:

--Four hundred people are expected at a forum Friday in Charlotte about the gridlock in Washington.

Morning Roundup: Coble open to tax hikes, Perdue may revoke judicial order

Members of the N.C. congressional delegation say they’re ready to compromise on some hardened positions to reach a deal that would prevent the country from plunging over the “fiscal cliff.” Failing to reach an agreement by the end of the year would trigger tax hikes and massive cuts in spending on federal programs.

N.C. Rep. Howard Coble is the latest Republican who says he’s willing to buck one of the party’s sacrosanct pledges to not raise taxes. Read full story here.

More political headlines:

--N.C. Supreme Court Justice Patricia A. Timmons-Goodson, the first and only female African-American to serve on the state’s highest court, is resigning her position. Gov. Bev Perdue, a Democrat who will leave office after next month, is intent on making the replacement even though if it means she rescinds an executive order she signed to do it.

Morning Roundup: Are you willing to you help payoff the nation's debt?

The nation's $16 trillion-plus debt has some Americans so worried that they've donated nearly $8 million outside of federal taxes - to help pay it off. Yes, it's less than a drop in the bucket, but every little bit helps, according to the Bureau of the Public Debt, which annually accepts such "gifts." Read the article here.

More political headlines you may have missed over the long weekend:

--State legislators say their upcoming proposal to deal with the unprecedented $2.8 billion unemployment insurance won’t eliminate the issue that has outraged the business community – the higher taxes being imposed on employers to pay down the debt.

Morning Roundup: How can Congress move forward?

How can a Congress with such wide political differences move forward together for the good of the nation? That’s the question the inaugural Solving It Together forum, presented by The Charlotte Observer and PNC Bank, will tackle.

Former N.C. Gov. Jim Martin, former U.S. Rep. John Spratt  and Congressmen Mel Watt, Patrick McHenry and Mick Mulvaney will participate. More details here.

More political headlines:

--The state Attorney General put on its public case Tuesday charging that a 7.2 percent rate increase approved for Duke Energy should be thrown out on the grounds that it’s causing a public hardship in the midst of a prolonged economic downturn.

McIntyre says he's returning to work amid recount

Democratic Congressman Mike McIntyre said Sunday he would return to Washington this week even as a recount looms in his re-election.

McIntyre finished 507 votes ahead of Republican David Rouzer in one of the most expensive congressional races in the nation.

His campaign manager said McIntyre would travel to the nation's capital Tuesday for his congressional duties."His commitment to the citizens and communities he represents is strong and solid," Lachlan McIntosh said in a statement. "We have a large team in place all over the 7th District as county Boards of Elections continue to review the provisional and absentee ballots.  We are confident our lead will continue and potentially grow -- and that our victory will stand.”

Rep. McIntyre finds glimmer of hope

Congressman Mike McIntyre, in a tough race to retain his seat against the well-funded challenge by Republican state Sen. David Rouzer, can take some encouragement from the latest Sabato’s Crystal Ball projections.

Morning Roundup: McIntyre feels like underdog in race against Rouzer

Democratic incumbent Rep. Mike McIntyre has a target on his back, and big money from conservative super PACs is backing Republican challenger David Rouzer. Here's the story.

Libertarian candidate for governor Barbara Howe is running for election 5K by 5K across the state. Read about that.

Another ad to boost Rouzer portays McIntyre as 'Washington liberal'

 

YG Network, one of the outside interest groups injecting huge amounts of money into the race between Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre and Republican challenger David Rouzer – more than $740,000 so far – is out with a new TV commercial.

The ad, which began airing in the Triangle and Wilmington on Thursday, picks up on the dominant theme of the national Republican effort to unseat McIntyre: that the conservative Democrat is a liberal henchman for President Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The spot features cartoon characters playing football.

“A master of the sneak, Mike McIntyre acts one way in North Carolina but in Washington he stars on the liberal team,” the ad says. It concludes with a heroic image of a cartoon Rouzer: “Vote for young, conservative star David Rouzer.”

YG Network reports spending nearly $1.3 million on this spot, which runs from Thursday to Nov. 5, and on another recent spot.

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