Who's On Your List

I'd love to hear - in a positive way - who people are voting for in tomorrow's primary. The rules: only write who you are voting for (and why, if you like). Do not refer to any candidates for whom you are not voting. If you do not follow the rules, your comments will be removed.

So, who floats your boat? Or who bugs you less than the alternative?



I, like Dan Coleman, voted single-shot for Margaret Brown.

I am very proud of the fact that the candidate that I worked for to the very last hour has won. Her name is Valerie Foushee. She has been honest, sincere, well-organized, and thoughtful. But, most important she has been truthful and honest.

I am happy that Moses because he had the guts to be truthful and honest.

I am proud that Pam (a new comer to politics) did very very well. She did very very well. I predict that you will see Pam more in the future.

Despite what many people on this blog have argued with me about. This election was not about the one issue of merger or Moses would have lost. But, Moses won. This election was politicians telling the truth. The election was about politicians vowing to put together a positive process where the citizens feel respected and included.

Valerie won without the INDY endorsement, won without the Chapel Hill News endorsement. She won with the will and grassroots organization of the people who care about improving how government bodies communicating with each other and with the public.

Three cheers for democracy and for honesty. This is a new day in Orange County politics.

I voted for Moses and Pam. Not only was Moses genuine and brave in his pressing the issue of equity in funding for schools, I happen to think he is right.

Pam has always impressed me as possessing a great deal of common sense. That, coupled with her history being willing to "roll up her sleeves" and do the work required to get things done, put her at the top of a solid set of candidates, in my opinion.

I voted for Tom Gilmore in the Democratic primary for Sect.. of Agriculture. This is one instance where a "throw the bums out" mentality is entirely justified, even if the incumbent is only a caretaker bum.



I agreed with the Indy endorsements in the non-local races, with the exception of Marcus Williams for the judicial seat. I decided to support him after reading the comments of some of y'all here on OP.

Since I live in town, I have been blissfully ignorant of the county school board race. But for a moment I did wish I lived in Hillsborough so I could vote for Barry Jacobs for NC House.

And as I've posted elsewhere, I voted for Val Foushee and Moses Carey for county comissioner. I think this reflects my frustration with the comissioners, but resistance to the current "throw the bums out" mentality. Like Joe, I just don't see merger as a defined enough issue to base my vote on.

It is late, so I am going to make this brief. I am voting for Valerie Foushee and Pam Hemminger. They would bring fresh ideas and a willingness to listen and communicate. They would set a positive tone. They have a vested interest in the schools. They would deal with constituents in an honorable and respectful manner, which I have found lacking in the many commissioner meetings (particularly the joint school board meetings) over the past 2 years. Both candidates have very good public service, community service, and volunteer experience. Mrs. Foushee and Mrs. Hemminger would represent the interests of many of the citizens of Orange County as the will of their constituency is ascertained via hearings and other public input processes. Both candidates have gained a tremendous amount of knowledge during the campaign period and I have seen them prove themselves via their improvement with each subsequent forum. Both candidates excelled in the Chapel Hill Herald forum.

They would have a learning curve, but so has every incumbent who ever held their particular office for the first time. The county has many experts on its staff and has the ability to retain consultants when outside expertise is needed.

I disagree with Mr. Capowski regarding state-mandated merger. I spoke with our state reps and several key staff and was told that the merger preference was a legacy of the Martin administration and that the state government is staying out of this local issue.

Merger got me more involved at the county government level, and it was my experiences during this involvement, much more so than the discussion of merger itself, that has motivated me during this election. I believe in healthy dialog on issues and believe in sticking to the facts during discussions such as those on OP. I respect those who start and hold such dialogs, but I also believe that my representatives are responsible for representing the will of his or her constituency when this will is clear.



The thoughtful, articulate, malice-free comment above demonstrates perfectly why I will more than likely vote for Alex Zaffron in whatever campaign he finds himself next. Thanks, Alex.

I suppose my previous comment doesn't follow the rules, so here's the rest. My votes will mirror the Indy endorsements, for the most part. I'm thinking, however, of going with Thornburg for Court of Appeals, mainly because I feel better about his endorsements than I do about Schiller's.

I voted for Moses and Margaret for several

reasons. First, the county is in good shape and I see no

reason to vote out the incumbents. Second, school

merger while important, is not the overwhelming

issue that by itself should select a candidate.

(I realize that my next two sentences violate Ruby's

instructions, but without them I would be inconsistent,

so I ask her to leave them in.)

Third, while I endorsed Valerie early on, I was frankly

disappointed by her performance in the Sierra Club and

subsequent forums. Once the subject turned away from

schools, she offers only modest knowledge of the issues.

Finally, though I neither promote nor oppose merger,

I believe that it is inevitable; it will likely be

required by the state -- our current two school systems

are simply too expensive to sustain. This is buttressed

by (approximate) figures that in the last 15 years

the number of counties with two systems has shrunk from

41 to 11 and Orange will be forced to follow.

All right, I'll wade in. Having lurked on the other strings dealing with these subjects, I have chosen, by and large, not to jump into the cesspool of personal attacks, unsupported conjecture, innuendo, conspiracy theories, intimation of motives of malice and other sundry poison that have characterized those 'conversations' (with some notable exceptions) at the expense of reasoned discussion of issues. As such, I appreciate Ruby's rules for this string, and will attempt to frame my contribution accordingly.

While it's unfortunate that the issue of school merger has completely eclipsed the myriad issues that are at stake in the Commissioners' race, one would be foolish to have expected any different given the explosive nature of the issue--which has been borne out by the tenor of the aforementioned discussions. This being the case, I believe that the candidates' responses in this environment are probably most illustrative in predicting how they would respond in other controversial situations.

Using this yardstick, I will begin by giving my Political Brass Balls award to Moses. By forthrightly raising this issue with full knowledge of the political hazards, Moses has demonstrated true leadership in bringing to the forefront a recognition of inherent inequities in the current system configuration, and that no measure that may offer promise to address those questions in a substantive fashion, regardless of its political volatility, should be summarily dismissed. And, it bears repeating that Moses has not stated that merger is definitively the mechanism that is guaranteed to solve the problem, but that it would be irresponsible to peremptorily eliminate the notion in any comprehensive discussion to solve these equity questions.

I agree with some other posters that Moses has not necessarily been on the forefront in some areas of land-use and development, but his courageous posture on what is, at its core, a fundamental social justice and equity issue, gets my vote.

Similarly, I concur with many of the (reasonable) posters' concerns about Margaret's leadership style. As well, in addition to the affordable housing issues raised by Ruby, no one has gone unscathed--Margaret advanced the idea a while ago that Orange Community Housing and Land Trust (disclosure: I serve on OCHLT's Board of Directors) should get out of the business of new construction: This is a curious and troubling position given that the creation of new, permanently affordable stock is central to the organization's mission.

Recognizing the above, Margaret has been a tireless leader in advancing watershed protection, protection of the Bolin and Morgan Creek corridors and comprehensive land-use planning--Although her emphasis and approach frequently differ significantly from mine.

On what has become the central issue, however, Margaret has refused to be backed into a corner to repeat the 'Separation Today, Tomorrow, and Forever' (sic) mantra on the merger issue. While anti-merger advocates characterize this position as unresponsive, I would argue that in taking this posture, Margaret is refusing to simply be reactive. Rather, what she has advocated is that the county engage in a comprehensive disccussion to study the issue, and let the chips fall where they may after a process of objective deliberation--a task that will surely be difficult, and has been lamentably absent in the heated 'discussion' that has taken place thus far.(Hint--Professional consulting/facilitation firms can help greatly). As such, I will vote for Margaret as well, and hope that some of the reasonable critiques that have been offered will be taken to heart.

None of this should be taken to denigrate the honorable service and largely thoughtful campaigns run by Pam and Val. They are dedicated and sincere people. But in the mean, to take an ironclad position on an issue as complicated as how to address the fundamental inequities in our school systems without agreeing to move forward with a process to evaluate all of the alternatives does not IMHO, lead us to the best result.

I will freely admit that my perspective is colored by my own experience as a lightning rod (see downtown development and connectivity in Carrboro)--But if you can articulate a clear vision, weather the storms of controversy, articulate a clear vision and include the community in these decision making processes, the results, while they wil never satisfy everyone and won't happen overnight, can be spectacular.Conversely, while one can squish about on a controversial issue to the point that no one is furious, one does so at the risk of winding up with measures that look good on a campaign brochure, but as a practical matter, produce squat.

As a final note, I have not agreed with anyone I've worked with and supported in this business 100% of the time (okay, maybe Joal Hall Broun--Can't think of any beefs now), and have had strong disagreements with many from time to time. But, a willingness to tackle the big issues head-on, from a principled perspective, with a willingness to listen and accommodate, are characteristics that I trust and admire.

So That's my 2 cents. I am available for pelting with overripe vegetation by appointment only.




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