All posts in category Elections

The View From Here

After I was elected in 2015, I asked to occupy the seat on the dais once held by former Council Member Matt Czajkowski. I had long admired his intellect and insight. He was able to perceive unintended consequences in council decisions that eluded his colleagues on the dais. But his trenchant observations often brought out […]

A win for Chapel Hill

Who won last Tuesday’s municipal elections? The residents of Chapel Hill did. Chapel Hill voters elected four newcomers to the four Town Council seats. (Mayor Pam Hemminger, whose only opponent was a write-in candidate, won re-election.) The council members-elect are younger than the incumbents they are succeeding, and for the most part, seem less entrenched […]

Two ways to message

The N.C. General Assembly declined to pass HB-746 during its short session, which left one gun advocate livid. The proposed bill would have allowed concealed handguns to be carried without a permit. The bill came to the floor for consideration at the start of a week that would erupt in eight mass shootings in the […]

We the people

After the U.S. Department of the Interior retweeted a pair of aerial photos comparing the size of the crowd at President Obama’s inauguration in 2009 with the much sparser attendance at Donald Trump’s ceremony, Trump ordered the department’s Twitter accounts to be shut down. Soon after, all pages on Whitehouse.gov that made reference to civil […]

Living Stronger Together

The racial equity workshop I signed up for couldn’t have come at a better time — two days after the American people elected a president who campaigned to deport a large chunk of the workforce because of their ethnicity and to close our borders to Muslims and non-white refugees. For the most part, the workshop […]

How we can win

Heaven help us, we have elected a hatemonger as our next president. The day before the election, I accompanied some foreign journalists, many of them from the Asia Pacific, to a Donald Trump rally in Raleigh. It felt like we were on a movie set for a gladiator film. With lies and innuendo, Trump kept […]

Add to pre-vacation to-do list: Vote

Your vote in the June 7 primary for N.C. Supreme Court candidates matters more than you might think. The seven-judge panel at present has four Republicans and three Democrats, and their votes on civil rights and quality-of-life issues have followed party lines. The top-two vote-getters in the June 7 primary will vie for the seat […]

#WeAreNotThisEither

Years ago, Chapel Hill adopted a campaign contribution policy to encourage voter-owned elections and make it harder for donors to “buy” elections. Individual campaign donations were limited to $336, a sharp contrast to the $5,100 limit for county commissioner, U.S. president and other partisan elections. Given the recent news about campaign finances of council member […]

Council leads whole community

Usually it’s the victors who write the histories, but in Chapel Hill politics lately the losers are busy scribbling and publishing and mischaracterizing the outcome of the most recent election, as does a column in The Chapel Hill News Nov. 29, “New council must lead divided community.” Molly De Marco and Travis Crayton wrote that […]

Crossing over

Come Wednesday, I will cross over, moving from the spectator side of the council dais to Participant Row. And that means Chapel Hill Watch must undergo a metamorphosis of its own. No longer will I be able to critique content after the fact. If I disagree with a colleague or hear a council member behaving […]