Vote For Marriage NC welcomes Democratic primary
By L.A. Williams, Correspondent
Christian Action League
RALEIGH — N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue’s Thursday afternoon announcement that she will not seek re-election sets the scene for an intense contest for the state’s top elected post this election season.
While the governor said in a statement widely reported in the media that she “does not back down from tough fights,” she also added, “… I understand this: We live in highly partisan times, where some people seem more worried about scoring political points than working together to address the real challenges our state faces. And it is clear to me that my race for reelection will only further politicize the fight to adequately fund our schools. A reelection campaign in this already divisive environment will make it more difficult to find any bipartisan solutions.”
The Governor’s announcement came on the heels of low poll ratings (she consistently trailed Republican Pat McCrory by 6 to 10 points) and in the wake of indictments of three of her former campaign workers. Public Policy Polling reported that her ratings had floundered with her last positive approval rating in April of 2009. Although her numbers had risen some in the polls last year as she battled Republicans over education funding, any recovery was apparently too little too late. Most recently, her proposed increase in sales taxes was not well-received.
Even though some Democrats expressed relief at the Governor’s announcement that she would not run, several media sources reported that she was not forced into the move by party leaders in Raleigh or Washington.
John Dinan, a Wake Forest University political science professor, said in a media advisory that Perdue’s decision, though late in the campaign calendar, now “clears the way for Democrats to nominate someone with a better chance of keeping the seat in Democratic hands.”
The question of who could replace Perdue on the Democratic ticket has generated a list of possibilities including Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx, former White House chief of staff Erskine Bowles, and former congressman Bob Etheridge, to name a few. Rep. Bill Faison (D-Orange) had been saying since November that he expected Gov. Perdue to “do the right thing and decide not to run.” He had threatened to challenge Perdue in the primary and has already been airing television ads to promote his jobs plan.
The Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League, said it is too early to see how the politics will play out, but not too soon to begin to say a prayer for the person who will wind up in the Governor’s seat.
“Obviously we’ve had our differences with some of Gov. Perdue’s positions, but we’ve also seen eye-to-eye with her on other matters,” he said. “We commended her last year about this time for making the right decision not to privatize liquor sales.”
Vote FOR Marriage NC issued a response to the Governor’s announcement as well.
“Even though Governor Perdue opposed the Marriage Amendment, we thank her for her service to the State of North Carolina and wish her the best in the future,” said Tami Fitzgerald, the group’s chairwoman, as she emphasized the importance of allowing the people of our state to decide how marriage will be defined.
“Concerning questions about the potential now for a Democrat primary for Governor, the most recent Civitas poll shows 58 percent of Democrats support the amendment, so we welcome a Democrat primary,” she added.
Dr. Creech said, “Our prayer is simply that the Lord will raise-up godly candidates so that whoever wins in November will lead our state in the right direction.”