By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
February 26, 2014
This week, long-time friend of the Christian Action League and five-term state Senator, Neal Hunt (R-Wake) announced that he is retiring from the NC Senate at the end this legislative biennium. Hunt jokingly told the Raleigh News and Observer that he is “old and creaky,” and feels some “fresh blood” is probably needed. Hunt said he also believes in term limits.
In a statement from Hunt’s legislative office released on Monday, Hunt said:
“No words can describe how humbled I have been to serve my constituents in the North Carolina Senate. Writing legislation and making tough decisions that will move the state in the right direction has been a daunting task, but I feel that my Republican colleagues and I have made prudent choices for North Carolina.”
Hunt’s statement also described his tenure from a time when he served in the minority on the “back row” as liberals made decisions that put the state further into debt and increased the size of government, as opposed to expanding business and employment opportunities for the state’s citizens. He went on to say that when Republicans took control in 2010, some very difficult choices needed to be made and despite the substantial negative media coverage and protests, the reforms are working. Hunt went on to site an unemployment rate that is falling faster than any other state in the nation, businesses coming to North Carolina because of lower and competitive tax rates, as well as the state’s debt to the federal government decreasing.
Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League said Sen. Neal Hunt has been an exemplary lawmaker. “He not only has served as Co-Chair of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, where his fingerprints have been all over a common sense approach to budgeting for our state, but he’s been on the right side of the many critical social issues of our time. Whether it’s a life issue, marriage and the family, or something else pertinent to the moral climate of our state, we could always count on Sen. Hunt to vote the right way,” said Rev. Creech. “We’re sorry to hear he’s leaving and pray that someone of his character and Christian convictions will replace him.”
The News and Observer reports that current House member, Rep. Jim Fulghum (R-Wake) has filed to run for Hunt’s seat. Hunt has endorsed Fulghum’s candidacy.
Gary Pendelton, a former Wake County Commissioner intends to run for the House seat that Fulghum will vacate. Kimberly Hanchette, a Democrat and founder of the Raleigh-based Diabetes Management Solutions has also filed to run for the seat to be vacated by Fulghum.
Hunt says he will continue to work hard for his constituents until his term is over. The short session of the North Carolina General Assembly is scheduled to reconvene on May 14th.