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This week, the North Carolina Chapter of Americans for Prosperity (AFP-North Carolina) announced its Legislative Goals for the 2013-14 legislative biennium. The Regular Session convened briefly on January 9th to adopt rules and organize the session but will reconvene on Wednesday, January 30th.
When it comes to advancing the free market agenda, no state has a better opportunity this year than North Carolina. We believe that we have a genuine opportunity to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit in North Carolina with lower taxes and regulations to make government less entangling and burdensome to North Carolinians. We will aggressively promote the opportunities of cheaper energy, quality educational choices, leaner and less burdensome government, and lower taxes.
Please remember that AFP deals only with issues of economic freedom, school choice, and property rights. There are other important issues that face North Carolinians which fall outside of our mission.
We hope you will stand with us once again to promote the following goals:
- Passage of the state budget without tax increases;
- Lower overall tax burden in North Carolina;
- Support for Constitutional Spending Limits that could include: Taxpayers Bill of Rights (TABOR) that would limit government spending to the increase in population and inflation and/or legislative supermajority requirement to raise taxes;
- Keeping North Carolina as a “Right-to-work State,” by implementing it into the state constitution along with the state’s ban on public employee collective bargaining;
- Dedicating all North Carolina Education Lottery revenue to school construction; or support ending all state-run gambling;
- Elimination of North Carolina’s Estate Tax – also called the “Death Tax”;
- Promotion of legislation that allows for the exploration and production of North Carolina’s energy resources;
- Advocating a “rollback” of North Carolina’s Renewable Portfolio Standard;
- Blocking the creation of a North Carolina Healthcare Exchange;
- Allowing the purchase of health insurance from any state;
- Passage of legislation to get the state of North Carolina out of the liquor business;
- Ending all “welfare for politicians,” known as taxpayer-funded elections;
- Protecting free and political speech rights by deregulating campaign speech;
- Ending the Golden Leaf Foundation;
- Converting the Tax Credit for Children with Disabilities into a refundable tax credit;
- Increasing the number of non-public school choice options available to parents;
- Repeal of the corporate income tax and elimination of all corporate welfare;
- Simplifying and lowering individual income taxes;
- Promoting the elimination of redundant committees and commissions in order to shrink the size of government in North Carolina;
- Expanding recently passed tort reforms, including “loser pays”; and
- In general, greatly reducing the regulatory burden on businesses and citizens.
1:00 p.m. The Republican National Committee has reconvened and only one candidate has qualified to run, Reince Piebus. He is being nominated and seconded.
You may follow the proceedings live on C-SPAN.
Since no other nominations qualify, rule 5-B says that they close nominations and stand for voting. Only three people voted against him, assuring him of re-election. Congratulations to Chairman Priebus.
In his acceptance speech, he called this overwhelming support, “a great honor.”
Renew, Grow, Win is the theme of the meeting and is his agenda for the next two years.
1:16 We must train activists and volunteers with modern tools. (We will have more details of the speech soon.
1:33 Sharon Day is being nominated for a second term as Co-Chairman of the RNC.
1:40 After four seconding speech, Sharon Day was elected, un-opposed, as Co-Chairman of the Republican National Committee. She wants to lead a principled path to reach every single voter. Lead a path that every single American knows is right.
The convention next elected Treasurer, Tony Parker, and Secretary Demetra DeMonte, unanimously, as was Sharon Day.
NC National Committeewoman Ada Fisher thanked everyone for coming down to North Carolina.
2:00 After a few final announcements, the meeting was adjourned.
CHARLOTTE: Friday, January, 25, 2013
PLEASE SCROLL DOWN & REFRESH BROWSER FOR THE LATEST UPDATES
11:00 After a series of morning meetings and regional breakfasts, the meeting has been called to order by Republican National Committee Chairman (RNC) Reince Priebus.
Committeeman David Lewis of NC gave the Invocation. Committeewoman Ada Fisher lead the Pledge of Allegiance.
This writer spoke with NC Chairman, Robin Hayes this morning before the meeting. Unfortunately, he had to leave and gave his voting proxy to Dr. Fisher.
At 1:00 today, C-SPAN will broadcast live from this event.
Possible controversies: Chairman Reince Priebus could be challenged by a Ron Paul follower from Maine. NC Committeewoman Ada Fisher stated in an interview that she would support the re-election of Chairman Priebus.
NC Chairman Hayes mention that he did not have enough states to qualify to run in this race, will may hamper the Maine candidate’s chances.
Currently, there are about 8 people protesting outside the Westin Hotel. Perhaps the extreme cold has kept their numbers down. Meanwhile, there are a number of college students in the audience who, instead of going to class this week, have chosen to follow the proceedings, here. They appear to be interested in learning how the party works.
The Meeting has adjourned for lunch. The election of officers, will take place after they reconvene at 1:00.
This concludes this post. See Part II after lunch.
With the beginning of the new year, more of the provisions of Democrats’ massive, unpopular health care law are going into effect and news reports are, again, popping up illustrating all the negative impacts on health care this ill-conceived law will have.
The New York Times reported last week, “Health insurance companies across the country are seeking and winning double-digit increases in premiums for some customers, even though one of the biggest objectives of the Obama administration’s health care law was to stem the rapid rise in insurance costs for consumers. Particularly vulnerable to the high rates are small businesses and people who do not have employer-provided insurance and must buy it on their own. In California, Aetna is proposing rate increases of as much as 22 percent, Anthem Blue Cross 26 percent and Blue Shield of California 20 percent for some of those policy holders, according to the insurers’ filings with the state for 2013.”
Politico adds today, “If you work for a small business, your next health insurance premium may give you sticker shock. Many of the small-business and individual insurance policies are working the health reform law’s 2014 fees into their 2013 bills, contributing to double-digit premium increases for some people. All those new consumer benefits packed into the health reform law — birth control without a co-pay, free preventive care and limits on when insurers can turn down a customer — had to be paid for somehow.”
“Insurers say they have no choice but to increase premiums to cover those costs,” Politico writes. “But it’s hitting pocketbooks sooner than some people expected, and that’s causing controversy. Everyone, even many of the law’s supporters, admit premiums are going to go up under the health law — although many people will get subsidies to help pay for coverage. Many of the costs — and the priciest benefits — were pushed beyond the 2012 election to 2014. But if the public revolts when they see 10 percent,15 percent or 20 percent rate hikes, already shaky support for the health law could suffer. . . . Now, insurers are being proactive, arguing the health law is driving the increase in prices. ‘There’s a massive new health insurance tax that starts in 2014,’ said Robert Zirkelbach, a spokesman for industry group America’s Health Insurance Plans. ‘For policies that are sold in 2013 and extend into next year, there’s going to be taxes imposed. … As a result, like all taxes, they will be reflected in premiums charged.’”
Meanwhile, the health care law is already resulting in cutbacks at health providers and is likely to hurt job creation in the years to come. In a story titled, “Delaware Hospice lays off 52 workers amid federal changes,” the Delaware News Journalwrites, “Delaware Hospice’s Chief Executive Officer Susan Lloyd said Wednesday the nonprofit healthcare provider has laid off 52 workers in a restructuring necessitated by shrinking federal reimbursements. The job cuts, which carve significantly into the organizations 400-member staff, impact jobs in all departments in Delaware, and in Delaware and Chester counties in Pennsylvania, Lloyd said. . . . . Lloyd said the cuts were unavoidable and represent a national trend of providers adapting to changes in health care reimbursement. . . . ‘The decision was not made lightly and it is a direct result of a consequential decline in census and the need to position the organization to meet additional changes and challenges that the hospice industry anticipates with health care reform.’”
And USA Today reported recently, “Many businesses plan to bring on more part-time workers next year, trim the hours of full-time employees or curtail hiring because of the new health care law, human resource firms say. Their actions could further dampen job growth, which already is threatened by possible federal budget cutbacks resulting from the tax increases and spending cuts known as the fiscal cliff. ‘It will have a negative impact on job creation’ in 2013, says Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. Under the Affordable Care Act, businesses that employ at least 50 full-time workers — or the equivalent, including part-time workers — must offer health insurance to staffers who work at least 30 hours a week. Employers that don’t provide coverage must pay a $2,000-per-worker penalty, excluding the first 30 employees.”
Republicans warned about all these consequences as Obamacare was being debated, but Democrats and President Obama ignored them and the disapproval of the American people. In December 2009, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said, “It’s abundantly clear that the more Americans learn about this bill, the more they oppose it. And now we know the same goes for businesses. Businesses that can’t insure workers face stiff fines, resulting in lost wages and jobs, according to the independent Congressional Budget Office. What’s more, studies suggest that this so-called employer mandate would have a disproportionate impact on low-income, entry-level workers. At a time of [high] unemployment, we should be doing everything we can to create jobs. This bill would only lead to more lost jobs.”
And the night Democrats jammed the bill through the Senate, Leader McConnell said “[H]ere’s the reality: the Democrat bill we’re voting on tonight raises health care costs. That’s not me talking — that’s the administration’s own budget scorekeeper. It raises premiums — that’s the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office talking. It raises taxes on tens of millions of middle class Americans. . . . It forces people off the plans they have — including millions of seniors.”
This terrible legislation still needs to be repealed and replaced, but until then it will unfortunately continue to raise premiums, raise health care costs, hurt care, and hurt jobs.
On his first official workday in office, newly minted Governor Pat McCrory got down to business. He signed his first executive order and named three more appointments to his leadership team.
His first act was to rescind one of his predecessors executive orders which was to have a panel pick vacant statewide judicial positions. In Executive Order 1, he will do it directly.
At his first press conference this morning, the governor expressed concern over the state’s exploding budget and warned agency directors to watch their bottom lines.
Additonally, he discussed the state’s Information Technology (IT) infrastructure, calling it antiquated and out-of-date. He had specific worries about the computers in Health and Human Services.
Finally, he named three more to positions of political importance:
Tony Almeida as Senior Advisor to the governor for Jobs and the Economy, Fred Steen as the governor’s Legislative Liaison and Chris Estes as State Chief Information Officer.
Tuesday evening, the Governor will be in his predecessor’s (and this blogger’s) hometown of New Bern, greeting constituents. Katy’s Conservative Corner will be there and have the story for you, as well as other stories of the day and from the past weekend.
Remember all that work you did last Spring, Summer, and Fall? Today is pay off time as North Carolina’s new Governor, Pat McCrory, is inaugurated. The activities will take place in the old Senate Chambers at Capitol Square in downtown Raleigh. The details follow, below.
Find out how you can watch the entire event on your computer, via Livestream and scroll down to see the activities of the noon hour. Katy’s Conservative Corner will also be there to bring you photos and interviews.
We listed a viewing guide beneath the video box, to assist you.
ACTIVITIES OF NOON HOUR
|WHO:||Governor-Elect Pat McCrory|
|WHAT:||Official Swearing-In Ceremony|
|WHEN:||Saturday, January 5, 2013
12:00pm – 12:30pm
|WHERE:||House of Representatives Chamber
North Carolina State Capitol, Second Floor
1 East Edenton Street
Raleigh, NC 27601
12:00pm – Gov. Elect McCrory enters chamber
12:02pm – Pledge of Allegiance and National Anthem
12:05pm – Invocation by Minister David Chadwick
12:07pm – Transfer of the seal w/ Gov. Elect McCrory & Gov. Perdue
12:11pm – Gov. Elect McCrory takes the oath of office, administered by Chief Justice Parker
12:17pm – Gov. McCrory exits chamber
OPEN TO FAMILY and media only
Swearing in of Cabinet Secretaries
|WHO:||Governor Pat McCrory, Cabinet Secretaries|
|WHEN:||Saturday, January 5, 2013
North Carolina State Capitol, Second Floor
1 East Edenton Street
Raleigh, NC 27601
You may also watch the proceedings on North Carolina Public Television.
ACU Chairman Al Cardenas welcomed in the 2013 New Year with a bold statement on the latest”Fiscal Cliff” proposal:
“The American Conservative Union simply cannot accept or support the Senate Bill as passed this morning, which does nothing to reign in out of control spending. Given the dire financial situation our country faces,
ACU would have supported, albeit reluctantly, the Bush era tax cut extensions for those with incomes under $400,000 to $450,000 and supported the Death Tax provisions that maintain the current exemptions and are indexed for inflation.
This is vital for our family farms and family-owned businesses.
Our nation has a spending problem, not a revenue problem.
Rather than do the essential work of cutting spending, the current bill actually adds even more deficit spending. Congress needs to make the hard decisions now for the future of our children and grandchildren. Therefore, ACU recommends that the House take the non-tax provisions out of the Senate Bill and pass it. They should then go back to the drawing board and put together a comprehensive plan to responsibly deal with unemployment insurance, the Farm Bill, special interest tax subsidies and replacing the sequester with targeted spending cuts in a way that would be in line with our conservative values.”
The American Conservative Union holds CPAC, the largest national gathering of conservatives. In the past few years, the organization has expanded into the midwest and Florida.
KCC has been to many CPAC events and enjoys being an official blogger.
The Wake County Republican Party is soliciting information from small business owners about how they built their businesses. Anyone wishing to tell their story can do so simply by sending an e-mail to Ididbuildit@Wakegop.org .
The effort is in response to President Obama’s infamous quote that “if you own a small business, you didn’t build that…”
“Business people all over the country and right here in Wake County are outraged that the President would denigrate their hard work, ingenuity and risk taking,” said Susan Bryant, the Wake Republican Chairman. “His insensitive words were an insult to thousands of people, and he should be ashamed.
“We Republicans think America’s entrepreneurs are the key to what made us the greatest and most prosperous country in history, and in our local area, we want to recognize these unsung heroes of free enterprise.”
The party will feature the best stories from among those it receives at the new email address on its website, in various mailings and other advertising vehicles, and by inviting business owners to speak at events, according to Bryant.
American Crossroads on Wednesday, launched a new television ad in North Carolina that blasts President Obama for his failed economic policies, and demonstrates that contrary to Obama’s “Forward” campaign slogan, America is really moving backward on his watch.
Supported by a $811,000 television buy, the new 30-second ad will run in North Carolina for ten days. The spot, entitled “Forward?,” highlights a series of economic facts on the extent of Obama’s economic malaise, including that 40% of families are living paycheck to paycheck on Obama’s watch.
“For Barack Obama, ‘Forward’ is the new backward, because another four years of Obama’s economic policies will only keep moving America backward,”
said American Crossroads director of state and regional media relations Nate Hodson. “Obama’s hollow campaign slogan is another attempt to divert attention from the fact that during Obama’s tenure, unemployment, household incomes, gas prices and the national debt are all getting worse.”
Editor’s Note: American Crossroads is a non-profit 527 political organization dedicated to renewing America’s commitment to individual liberty, limited government, free enterprise and a strong national defense through informed and effective political action. American Crossroads seeks to educate voters and empower citizens to hold lawmakers and office-seekers accountable for where they stand. (Emphasis added.)
We are now live blogging the closing session of the American for Prosperity Foundation’s Defending the Dream Conference. It’s their largest event of the year, attended by conservatives nationwide. Please excuse spelling errors.
Vice President of AFPF, Alan Cobb is first up to speak. Keep checking for updates. Your blogger sat with his teenage children last night at the Ronald Reagan dinner and they mentioned how much time and financial resources he donates to this cause. He is introducing Brent Bozell, KCC’s hero, founder of the Media Reasearch Center.
His father was also a hero of this blogger, helping to start the original conservative movement right before Barry Goldwater ran for the presidency. The number ! story in this election cycle is unemployment and the economy. Yet ABC, CBS, and NBC didn’t report this terrible news, until they absolutely had to. ABC still has not reported it.
Gas prices went up and only 27 stories came out. Yet during the Bush years, four times as many gas prices stories came out.
The media also has plenty of time plenty of time for Mitt Romney and his “gaffs”. Four years ago when Obama went overseas, the Big Three networks treated him like a GOD. Don’t worry because new media will take them over, and we have!!!
Tim Phillips, president of AFP, is introducing the state directors. In this blogger’s opinion, he should give Dallas Woodhouse and the North Carolina team special recognition. We were the very first state, originally organized as Citizens for a Sound Economy.
Mark Levin is now speaking and says its Barack Obama’s birthday, to much laughter.
He says we are standing on great shoulders. He reminded us of the one generation freedom is from extinction as Ronald Reagan said. Abraham Lincoln said that our worst enemy comes from within.
He says things like social justice, economic equality, and such things have come into our culture. It’s hard to believe that the President of the United States is one of the malcontents that are being created. It’s seeping into our culture by indoctrination. We now live in a post constitutional world, thanks to these malcontents.
He mentioned Woodrow Wilson. He condemned Federalism and the notion of state sovereignty. He said liberty was a privildge. The will determine the scope of the office. He called this “constitutional adaptation.” I call it bull crap, said Levin.
Is there anything the Federal Government cannot regulate if it chooses to? Levin mentioned the recent the Supreme Court ruling that said the government can regulate our physical and mental health. It’s a post-constitutional goverment in an increasingly authoritarian society.
He mentioned that it’s Obama’s birthday today, but so what, it’s also Saturday.
No President has had more contempt for the country he leads and for the people he represents. Mr. President, if you don’t understand the way American works, how can you fundamentally transform it?
Levin asks “since when does the money you earn belong to the government?”
Obama said if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.
Obama says it’s time for a revolution, but Levin says its time to reinstate the American Revolution!
The Obama administration has driven up our debt in four years more than $41 trillion, more than all other presidents combined. The poor have gotten poorer. The welfare state is growing and collapsing at the same time.
“What the hell are our kids gonna do”, asks Levin.
The challenge today is much more complicated than previous wars because the challenge is from within.
No society is guaranteed perpetual existence. That’s why we must work for this election, next election, and in the elections beyond. We have no choice. This is our country and we want it back!
Standing roudy ovation.
This ends our live blogging session. We’ll have more on this wonderful Defending the Dream Conference soon.