With candidate filing a mere six weeks away, it's worth noting something we missed in late December: the heated rhetoric from two Democratic state lawmakers in the nascent race for state superintendent.
It began with Fayetteville Rep. Rick Glazier's formal entry into the campaign -- even though sitting Democratic superintendent June Atkinson has yet to announce her re-election plans. State Rep. Tricia Cotham, a Charlotte area Democrat, who is also eyeing the post, sent a missive to her supporters titled "Let's Stand Together."
"This is just the latest of many attempts by a small group of education elites to undermine June Atkinson's efforts," Cotham said, without explaining what she meant by "education elites." "As June was preparing for re-election in 2008, this same legislator - who now wants your vote for superintendent - sponsored legislation to take away the voters' right to elect the superintendent and to eliminate the superintendent's historic role as an executive officer of our state."
Glazier's campaign manager Adam Scott suggested Cotham is guilty of negative campaigning -- the opposite from her email title. "Representative Cotham’s letter clearly indicates that, if she decides to run for Superintendent, she intends to run a negative campaign. Democrats should be united in fighting Republican attacks against our teachers and our schools-- not each other," he said in statement.
Now political observers are just waiting to hear from Atkinson, so the gloves can really come off.