Archive for August, 2014

WHOSE ON FIRST?

Polls show that incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan is two percentage points ahead of House Speaker Thom Tillis in the U.S. Senate race. But for all practical purposes, the contest is a dead heat. Hagan is considered one of the most vulnerable senators as Republicans attempt to gain control of the chamber. But millions of dollars spent on advertising has not moved the need—in either direction. Have the grass-roots voters tuned out?

Leading national polls show the public is in a bad mood. Only 1 in 5 believe the country is on the right track. They blame both parties and perceive no leadership from candidates in both parties. While Sen. Hagan comes from the moderate ranks of the Democratic party, business people wonder how will her party address such issues as tax reform? And what are Republican strategies to break gridlock and put more people back to work in the private sector? Negative campaign ads don’t offer any answers.

Democrats are contending with the polarizing administration of President Obama. The GOP has the increasing distaste for the Tea Party.

And to the question as to who is on first? We don’t know.

SINE DIE … FINALLY.

The General Assembly finally left Raleigh last week … six weeks after the July 4 target date. Rambunctious relations between the House and the Senate resulted in longer budget negotiations. Coal ash cleanup and economic incentives, plus public education issues involving teacher assistants lingered on the calendars. Hours before final adjournment, the House squelched an economic incentives package sought by the governor and Commerce Department. Still up in the air is how much consumers will pay and how much Duke Power shareholders will bear for the cleanup of coal ash ponds at power stations.

Originally, plans were to return in November after elections. Legislators say that probably will not happen.

CHECKS IN THE MAIL?

Hours after adjournment, business groups began sending out campaign contributions to legislators who supporter their agenda. The objective is to keep pro-business legislators in the House and Senate. This also should be a goal for our manufacturing members who benefit from all the services of the Textile Technology Center and Manufacturing Solutions Center. These centers would not exist without state funding and we have friends who worked hard to protect our appropriations.

Contributions must be on personal checks. The company and position held by the contributor are required. The contribution should be made out to HOSEPAC which will distribute funds to senators and representatives. Now is the time for us to step up!

For more information, call Paul Fogleman at 828-322-7766. The HOSEPAC address is P.O. Box 1708, Hickory NC, 28603.