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Price says House has votes to end shut down without strings

U.S. Rep. David Price of Chapel Hill says he's frustrated with the federal government shutdown, because vote tallies show there are enough votes in the House of Representatives to end it. At least 20 Republicans have gone on record saying they'd vote for a measure to fund the government with no strings attached. That would be enough votes to pass when combined with votes from Democrats. But so far Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, hasn't arranged to have a vote on a spending bill without the condition of a delay of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

Some North Carolina lawmakers defer pay, Renee Ellmers refuses

UPDATE: Renee Ellmers reversed course and will decline her salary during shutdown. Read the latest here.

As some North Carolina congressional lawmakers defer pay during the shutdown, GOP Rep. Renee Ellmers is refusing to do so -- and her remarks are drawing the attention of an advocacy group.

"The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line," Ellmers told WTVD, the Raleigh ABC station, Wednesday.

More than 70 congressional lawmakers are voluntarily not taking a salary during the partial government shutdown. Democrat David Price of Chapel Hill is donating his check to charity and Republican Robert Pittenger is returning it to the U.S. Treasury. Republicans George Holding, Virginia Foxx and Mark Meadows are not accepting their pay.

Berger, Tillis call voting lawsuit 'baseless,' while Hagan, Democrats cheer move

Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Thom Tillis called the U.S. Justice Department's lawsuit against the North Carolina voting law "baseless."

Reacting to the lawsuit, the two Republican legislative leaders issued a joint statement saying it is "nothing more than an obvious attempt to quash the will of the voters and hinder a hugely popular voter ID requirement."

"The law was designed to improve consistency, clarity and uniformity at the polls and it brings North Carolina’s election system in line with a majority of other states," the statement continued. "We are confident it protects the right of all voters, as required by the U.S. and North Carolina Constitutions.”

Meanwhile, Democrats and interest groups cheered the move, including U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, who had urged the Justice Department to review the law.

David Price: The End of Appropriations?

In an opinion piece written for Politico, senior budget writer Rep. David Price of Chapel Hill asks whether the budget process works any more.

As Congress refocuses its attention on the looming fiscal battles, with both sides steeling for a fight over the debt limit and a potential government shutdown, a development with greater implications for our nation’s future is unfolding with far less notice. The appropriations process — that hallmark of Congress’s constitutional authority and wellspring of our power to conduct oversight and set national priorities — is on life support and in danger of total collapse.

With just four legislative days left before the end of the fiscal year, not one of the 12 funding bills required to keep the government open has been enacted into law. House Republicans have struggled to pass even a continuing resolution to keep the government running for a few weeks while appeasing their red-meat conservatives.

Congressman David Price says Raleigh 'agitation' trumps talk of DC gridlock

Democratic Congressman David Price said Wednesday he is hearing a good deal from constituents about the politics in the state capital rather than the nation's capital these days.

"It's as much or more about Raleigh and what's going on here as it is what's going on in Washington," the Chapel Hill lawmaker told N&O reporters and editors. "Maybe Washington gridlock after a while gets to seem like old news.

"I haven't seen it this way ever; I think you'd have to go back to the civil rights years," he continued. "Certainly not since I've been in office has there been this much agitation over state level issues."

Praise pours in for Dean Smith

With former Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the praise has been pouring in.

"Dean Smith is known to all North Carolinians for his tremendous success as the coach of the Carolina men’s basketball team, but the Presidential Medal of Freedom recognizes that he has been far more than a coach to his players, his community, and his country,'' said Democratic Congressman David Price, who represents Chapel Hill.

"Throughout his life,'' Price said, "Coach Smith has shown courage and determination on some of the most pressing issues of our time, from working to end segregation in college athletics early in his career, to advocating for inclusion in church and community, to supporting equal rights for gay Americans. His beliefs have always been informed by his strong religious faith and his ability to bring out the best in his players and fellow citizens. I have been honored to count him as a friend for many decades, and I look forward to celebrating this well-deserved award with him and his family.”

State gets $3 million from feds for bio-threat early warning system

U.S. Rep. David Price, D-Chapel Hill, announced that NC will receive an additional $3 million in federal funding for a state bio-threat early warning system known as NCB-Prepared (or North Carolina Bio-Preparedness Collaborative).

NCB-Prepared's goal is to be able to detect symptoms of outbreaks that could indicate a bioterror attack, highly contagious disease, food-borne illness, or other public safety threat, Price’s office said in a release.

The project was started in 2010 with $5 million from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University lead it. Other public- and private-sector participants include the N.C. Division of Public Health, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Durham and SAS, a business analytics and software development company headquartered in the Research Triangle Park.

McIntyre, Rouzer, Jones, Price, Holding, and Coble and fund raising

Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre has raised $354,448 during the first six months of the year, while his likely GOP opponent, David Rouzer has raised $145,182, according to campaign finance reports.

McIntyre, the 7th district congressman who survived a very close election last time had $383,067 on hand in his campaign kitty as of June 30th, while Rouzer, a former state senator, had $168,269 on hand.

Most of McIntyre's money($274,028) was raised from political action committees.

The Rouzer campaign noted that it out raised McIntyre in individual donations $112,819 to $78,520 during the second quarter.

NC House delegation: Drill baby drill

North Carolina's congressional delegation on Friday largely split along partisan lines on bill that would open up the North Carolina coast to offshore drilling.

The House passed The Offshore Energy and Jobs Act by a 235-186 and will now go the Senate. All the state's Republicans as well as Democrat Mike McIntyre voted for the bill. All four Democrats voted against it.

The measure was supported by Republican Governors Pat McCrory of North Carolina, Bob McDonnell of Virginia and Nikki Haley of South Carolina.

Democratic Rep. David Price of Chapel Hill blasted the measure calling part of the "drill, baby drill mentality.''

"In my home state of North Carolina," Price said, "offshore drilling is highly controversial because of its potential adverse impacts on the environment and coastal communities, as well as the tourist economies on which they depend. In California, voters put in place a permanent ban on drilling in state coastal waters in 1994 because of the same concerns. In light of disasters such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf, North Carolinians are justifiably perry of allowing the same drilling off our coast.''

Morning Memo: Moral Monday protesters in court ahead of 8th rally

MORAL MONDAY PROTESTERS GO TO COURT, RALLY AGAIN: The 8th Moral Monday protest starts about 5 p.m. today and Democratic Congressman David Price will attend and boost its profile. Earlier in the day, about 17 protesters are expected to appear in court -- the first hearing for any of the nearly 500 people arrested at the N.C. General Assembly during protests against the state's Republican leaders. They are likely to plead not guilty to three charges stemming from their arrest at the first demonstration in April. N.C. NAACP President Rev. William Barber will be one of those in court. More from AP here.

TODAY AT THE STATEHOUSE: The House and Senate convene at 7 p.m. The House has a handful of routine legislative matters on the calendar but the Senate is scheduled to take a final vote on the landfill bill, which critics say would create mega-dumps for out-of-state trash in North Carolina. Earlier in the day, the House Finance Committee will hold a much-debated public hearing on Senate Bill 315, a measure regarding water and sewer lines to a controversial development in Durham County. Gov. Pat McCrory will attend the Red Hat headquarters opening in downtown Raleigh at 10:30 a.m.

***Good Monday morning. Thanks for reading the Dome Morning Memo. Read about the Democrats' "Daddy Warbucks fantasy" and business experts reaction to the tax proposal below. ***

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