by Jordan Green and Sayaka Matsuoka
Amidst a global pandemic, widespread upheaval over systemic racism, historic fires and storms, a president unwilling to commit to a peaceful transfer of power and the threat of political violence, no one has to tell you this election is consequential.
Get out and vote. Take two or three people with you. Drive your cousin to the polls. Check on your elderly and disabled neighbors to make sure they have a way to get there.
You can still vote absentee if you don’t feel safe voting in person, but your request must be received by your local board of elections by Oct. 27. If you go that route, make sure your ballot and return envelope are filled out correctly, including the witness signature and address. You can read up on voting by absentee ballot on the NC Board of Elections site. If you don’t have access to the internet, you can call the state board at 919.814.0700.
Better yet, vote in person during early voting starting Thursday, Oct. 15. Early voting runs through Saturday, Oct. 31. The deadline for registering to vote on Election Day proper has passed, but you can still register and vote at the same time during early voting. There are early voting sites scattered across Guilford and Forsyth counties. Visit the Guilford County Board of Elections site or the Forsyth County Board of Elections site for early voting locations and times. If the phone is your lifeline, then you can reach the Guilford County Board of Elections at 336.641.3836 (Greensboro) or 336.641.7895 (High Point), and the Forsyth County Board of Elections at 336.703.2800.
We’ve got all your candidates on the Guilford and Forsyth county ballots here, from president down to soil and water board, with the exception of those running unopposed. (Sorry, we also didn’t include write-in candidates.)
Once you’ve researched the candidates, go vote. Stand in line for hours, if you must. Vote in such heavy numbers that the bastards will know that no amount of trickery will stifle the voice of democracy.
- D — Democrat
- R — Republican
- L — Libertarian
- G — Green
- C — Constitutional
- U — Unaffiliated
- i — incumbent
Donald Trump (R, i): Leading into the election, questions of his inept handling of the coronavirus as well as his call to arms to the Proud Boys, an extremist, far-right gang, may impact President Trump at the polls. Trump also worked to delegitimize the election process, and refused to support a peaceful transfer of power if his opponent, Joe Biden, were to win the election. Since the onset of the virus in the states, more than 200,000 people have died, and unemployment rates skyrocketed. Then, in early October, Trump contracted the virus after downplaying its effects for months. At the end of September, Trump nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative who evangelicals think could vote to overturn Roe v. Wade, to the Supreme Court. A recent Pew Research Center poll from Oct. 9 found that Biden holds a wide lead on Trump when it comes to handling the coronavirus as well as bringing the country together and an overall lead of 10 points.
Joseph R. Biden (D): In the months since our primary election guide, Biden has carefully crafted a strategy to oppose President Trump, including picking Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate and outlining a coronavirus plan that would implement a nationwide mask mandate, something Trump will not do. Biden came out ahead in the polls after the first presidential debate in which Trump interrupted both Biden and moderator Chris Wallace repeatedly. Biden’s strongest arguments included Trump’s mishandling of the coronavirus, and the state of the economy — a topic that usually plays in Trump’s favor. Biden is leading in national polls and has outraised Trump in the last few months and is outspending in swing states like North Carolina.
Don Blankenship (C): Blankenship is running for political office for the second time, the first being a run for Senate in 2018. The former CEO of Massey Energy — one of the largest coal companies in the country — Blankenship rejects the notion of climate change and was sentenced to a year in prison after violating mine safety standards in relation to the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster in 2010, which killed 29 out of the 31 miners involved. According to FEC data, Blankenship had $13,152 ending cash on hand at the end of August.
Howie Hawkins (G): A long-time activist, Hawkins is the co-founder of the Green Party and has run for office on 24 occasions, all unsuccessfully according to a Syracuse University post. Throughout his lifetime, Hawkins has played leading roles in anti-war, anti-nuclear and pro-worker movements. His platform revolves around support for the Green New Deal, Medicare for All and ending militarized policing at home and abroad. According to FEC data, Hawkins had $68,060 ending cash on hand at the end of August.
Jo Jorgensen (L): Jorgensen was previously the Libertarian nominee for vice president in 1996 alongside running mate Harry Browne. She supports a free-market healthcare system and opposes the war on drugs. Jorgensen supports decriminalizing all drugs to end the over incarceration of people of color and has urged for the de-militarization of police. In terms of the pandemic, Jorgensen opposes mask mandates which she believes to be an assault on people’s liberties. According to FEC data, Jorgensen had $158,802 ending cash on hand at the end of August, the most of any third-party candidate.
Thom Tillis (R, i): Despite trailing opponent Cal Cunningham in the polls leading up to the election, Cunningham’s recent sex scandal has reinvigorated incumbent Thom Tillis’ campaign. Still, Tillis’ coronavirus diagnosis — after several individuals close to President Trump tested positive — adds another wrench into an already hotly contested race. Tillis has been a loyal supporter of Trump since his reversal of an op-ed last year and recently pushed for Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation. According to an Oct. 7 poll by FiveThirtyEight, Tillis still trails Cunningham by four to 11 percentage points.
Cal Cunningham (D): Cunningham’s race against incumbent Thom Tillis is one of the most-closely watched races in the country with control of the US Senate potentially at stake. In the past few months, Cunningham led Tillis by several points in national polls until revelations about an extramarital affair that took place over the summer surfaced. Since then, Cunningham, whose first stint in political office ran from 2001 to 2003, has struggled to refocus his campaign. Still, he remains up in the polls. Cunningham’s platform includes building on the Affordable Care Act, bolstering education and fighting climate change.
Shannon Bray (L): A Department of Defense employee who lives in Apex, Bray earned a master’s at the University of Delaware in cybersecurity and is currently pursuing his doctorate at Missouri University of Science and Technology in computer science with a focus on national security and election security. He says it’s “time to bring an end to perpetual wars with US involvement” and that he “fully supports removing government meddling from healthcare.”
Kevin E. Hayes (C): The Constitution Party nominee for US Senate describes abortion as “America’s Holocaust,” opposes red-flag laws on the basis that they revoke an individual’s Second Amendment right to bear arms without due process, and believes federal involvement in education is unconstitutional. During the North Carolina party’s 2018 nominating convention, Hayes said he doesn’t believe states should recognize federal decisions that violate his interpretation of the Constitution, specifically citing the Supreme Court’s 2015 Obergefell decision, which struck down prohibitions against same-sex marriage. The doctrine of nullification, espoused by Sen. John Calhoun of South Carolina prior to the Civil War, holds no legal validity, a constitutional scholar at Wake Forest School of Law told TCB.
US House District 6
Lee Haywood (R): Republican Lee Haywood served as the GOP chairman of the 6th Congressional District for the past two years and has opposed the Affordable Care Act and the Green New Deal. According to his website, he supports making sure law enforcement agencies are “fully funded” and supports a border wall between the United States and Mexico to “protect our nation’s sovereignty.” No coronavirus information was found on the candidate’s website but in a Facebook post from May, Haywood criticized Gov. Roy Cooper’s lockdown response, calling it a “un-American” and stating that he would “resist any effort to implement the Socialist’s [sic] vision of a new normal for America.”
Kathy Manning (D): According to June 30 campaign finance filings, Democrat Kathy Manning, a Greensboro philanthropist and immigration lawyer, has far outraised her opponent. The reports show that Manning has raised $1.37 million while Haywood sits at $15,365 total. The new district, which was approved in November 2019, includes all of Guilford county and heavily favors Democratic candidates. Manning called for a ban on the use of hogtying by law enforcement after the death of John Neville in the Forsyth county jail and added a Covid-19 response page to her website outlining details about the state’s reopening plans as well as local resources.
US House District 10
Patrick McHenry (R, i): The redrawn 10th Congressional District now includes the northern and western portions of Forsyth county. McHenry has held the seat since 2005. McHenry has supported a repeal of the Affordable Care Act on numerous occasions, is anti-abortion, and supports a stronger border control as a way of curbing immigration at the US-Mexico border. In a recent WXII article, McHenry supported President Trump’s response to the pandemic. McHenry is far outraising his opponent, David Parker, according to campaign finance reports from June and September.
David Parker (D): An attorney from Statesville, Parker served as the chairman of the North Carolina Democratic Party in 2012. That year, Parker faced scrutiny after Jay Parmley, the state party’s executive director, resigned amidst allegations of sexual harassment. At the time, Parker said Parmley had done nothing wrong and he refused to resign from his own post. Parker supports universal healthcare, according to an article by WXII and supported Gov. Cooper’s response to the pandemic on his Facebook.
Roy Cooper (D, i): Since the onset of the coronavirus in North Carolina, incumbent Gov. Roy Cooper has played a balancing game, deciding how much of the state to close and what stays open while attempting to curb the spread of COVID-19. Despite declaring a state of emergency in early March, Cooper declined to require masks in public places statewide until June 24. Still, he restricted the number of people that could gather indoors and promptly encouraged social distancing. During his tenure, Cooper has vetoed bills including anti-abortion bills and a bill that would require sheriffs to cooperate with federal immigration agents. Since mid-April, Cooper has held a wide margin in the polls against opponent Dan Forest and has outraised him significantly.
Dan Forest (R): Forest, who is currently serving as lieutenant governor, has focused on aligning himself with President Trump and received his endorsement in early July. Forest has been outspoken against Cooper’s handling of the pandemic, and sued Cooper in an attempt to block his executive orders that closed businesses and limited mass gatherings. Forest, who has held the lieutenant governor seat since 2013, has emphasized his socially conservative views which included his support for HB 2, and anti-abortion legislation. In a tweet from Sept. 16, Forest said he would lift the mask mandate for the state if elected. Forest has raised $6.9 million this election cycle, compared to Cooper’s $19.3 million.
Steven J. DiFiore (L): DiFiore attended UNC-Charlotte and writes on his campaign website that “a desire for a better kind of politics” is what drove him to run as a Libertarian candidate. DiFiore previously ran for Charlotte City Council and was defeated in 2017. DiFiore supports raising the cap on charter schools, privatizing the state’s alcoholic beverage control commission and a property tax holiday for small businesses during the pandemic.
Al Pisano (C): Former Charlotte police officer Al Pisano attended Western Carolina University and received a degree in criminal justice. Pisano helped found the North Carolina Constitution Party in 2018 and serves as the party’s chairman. As a leader of the far-right party, Pisano’s platform follows along conservative lines including strong support for the Second Amendment and advocacy for “constitutional carry,” which would allow all citizens to carry firearms. He also supports abolishing income tax.
Yvonne Lewis Holley (D): Holley has been in politics since 2012, when she was first elected to the state House. She’s currently campaigning on what she calls the “Affordable Living Initiative” which is a statewide plan that focuses on affordable housing, access to quality food, economic and workforce development, transportation access and public education. Holley also supports criminal justice reform, bans on assault weapons and access to abortion. Holley has raised $359,452 this election cycle according to a July campaign finance report.
Mark Robinson (R): Greensboro’s Mark Robinson has been a staunch supporter of President Trump, often speaking on Fox News and posting inflammatory status updates on Facebook. They include posts denying systemic racism (Robinson is Black), criticizing former First Lady Michelle Obama and calling Black Lives Matter protestors “terrorists.” He’s a vocal supporter of the Second Amendment and voter ID laws, and opposes abortion and sanctuary cities. Robinson has raised $333,132 this election cycle, according to a July campaign finance report.
Josh Stein (D, i): Stein was elected to the office formerly held by Gov. Roy Cooper in 2016, after serving as state senator and prosecutor at the NC Department of Justice. Following the death of George Floyd, Stein’s former boss, Cooper, appointed him to co-chair the Governor’s Task Force for Racial Equity in Criminal Justice. Despite his professed commitment to “achieving racial equity,” Stein’s track record hasn’t always reflected that value: He filed two motions opposing habeas corpus for Ronnie Long, a Black man from Concord who was imprisoned for 44 years after a false conviction for rape. A federal appellate judge whose order led to Long’s release in August, cited “a pattern of deceitfulness and suppression” by state actors who “conducted themselves in a corrupt manner.”
Jim O’Neill (R): O’Neill holds a similarly spotty record on actual innocence. As district attorney in Forsyth County, he consistently opposed review of Kalvin Michael Smith’s conviction in the brutal assault of Jill Marker up until a judge ordered Smith’s release in 2016 due to a failure by his attorney to present evidence that could have shortened his sentence. Since the death of George Floyd, prosecutors have come under renewed scrutiny for their handling of cases involving law enforcement perpetrators, and in July O’Neill announced charges against five detention officers and a nurse in connection with the death of John Neville in the Forsyth County jail. While expressing support for Neville’s family, O’Neill also took the opportunity during a press conference to speak out against defunding the police and to threaten Black Lives Matter protesters with prosecution. He has the backing of major law enforcement groups, including the Police Benevolent Association.
Beth A. Wood (D, i): Wood has held the office, which reviews finances for state agencies and monitors how taxpayer dollars are being spent, since 2009, when she became the first female auditor to hold the title. Since then, Wood’s office has uncovered multiple instances of the mishandling of public dollars. In June, they found that courses by the North Carolina Virtual Public School didn’t meet standards, and earlier this year her office found that the NC Department of Transportation overspent by $742 million, according to a News & Observer report.
Anthony Wayne Street (R): Republican Anthony Wayne Street describes himself as a fiscal and social conservative on his website and currently serves on the Brunswick County Soil and Water Board. In February, the News & Observer reported that Street has faced multiple charges since 2012 including two stalking charges in 2017 and 2018 against the same woman. He also was charged with simple assault in 2012 but the charges were eventually dropped. On his website Street mentions wanting to commit spending to increase agricultural production while promoting conservation and education.
Commissioner of agriculture
Steve Troxler (R, i): A Guilford County resident, Troxler has held the position of commissioner of agriculture since 2005. He describes himself as a “lifelong farmer” and boasts that that the ag industry has grown by roughly 33 percent over his tenure, while also taking credit for “fostering beginning and small farmers, protecting consumers, supporting conservation and healthy forests, delivering farm to school food, preserving farmland for future generations and protecting the safety of our food every day.”
Jenna Wadsworth (D): The 31-year-old Wadsworth also comes from a farming background. The Wake County Soil & Water Supervisor is a staunch progressive who unequivocally supports Black Lives Matter and says she would create a division within the Department of Agriculture to deal with climate change. Her prospects for ousting Troxler were probably hurt by a recent TikTok video in which she appears to take delight in the news about President Trump contracting coronavirus.
Commissioner of insurance
Mike Causey (R, i): A Greensboro area farmer and lobbyist, Causey was elected in 2016, unseating Democrat Wayne Goodwin. Causey made headlines early in his term when he reported Greg Lindberg for attempting to bribe him, resulting in a seven-year sentence for the Durham insurance magnate, not to mention a plea bargain by former North Carolina Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes. Causey’s tenure in the office has remained controversy-free, and he says he’s made the office more customer-friendly and doubled the number of fraud investigators.
Wayne Goodwin (D): Now the chairman of the North Carolina Democratic Party, Goodwin is seeking to get back his old job as insurance commissioner. Like Causey, Goodwin boasts that he’s held down insurance rates, and he says during his tenure he assessed the largest fine in state history, generating funds for public schools. Goodwin has racked up endorsements from the AFL-CIO of North Carolina and the NC Association of Educators, along with slew of state and local firefighters associations.
Commissioner of labor
Josh Dobson (R): After five terms, Republican Labor Commissioner Cherie Berry aka “the Elevator Lady” is retiring. The Republican who would like to succeed her is Josh Dobson, a state lawmaker from McDowell County. Dobson is the subject of a complaint by government watchdog Bob Hall that he double-dipped by collecting reimbursements from the state for travel expenses that he’d already covered through campaign funds. Dobson has dismissed the complaint as an election smear. Dobson says as labor commissioner he would try to limit regulations on employers to avoid putting them out of business.
Jessica Holmes (D): Holmes, who is the youngest person ever elected to the Wake County Commission, noted in a recent candidate forum that her mother earned minimum wage working at various meatpacking plants like the facilities across the state that have been overwhelmed by COVID-19 outbreaks, “with oftentimes no inspections following up on complaints from workers.” She says her goal as labor commissioner would be simple: “To ensure safe and healthy work environments for all North Carolinians…. I want you to go to work and come home with the same 10 fingers and 10 toes that you went to work with.”
Secretary of state
Elaine Marshall (D, i): Marshall is the longest serving member of Council of State, having beat out racecar driver Richard Petty for the seat in 1996. She’s had a brush with national political fame, too, as the 2010 Democratic nominee for US Senate, when she beat out one Cal Cunningham (look him up) in the primary that year. Marshall hasn’t made any huge waves in her past two terms as secretary of state, which is probably for the best: The office primarily serves as a repository for vital information like business incorporations, trademarks, professional credentials and lobbyist registries.
EC Sykes (R): A former manufacturing CEO, Sykes served as director of faith and religious liberty for Sen. Ted Cruz’s 2016 presidential campaign. It would be tough to yoke the staid office of secretary of state to hot-button social issues, but Sykes has made a game effort, challenging his Democratic opponent to take a stand on defunding the police and pledging to “restore our values” while his signature campaign video features a shot of the Confederate monument at the Old Capitol in Raleigh, which has since been removed. As secretary of state, he pledges to “eliminate wasteful spending” and “modernize our systems.”
Superintendent of public instruction
Jen Mangrum (D): Mangrum spent 14 years teaching elementary school in Onslow and Guilford counties before becoming an associate professor at UNCG. In June, Mangrum released a 19-page document outlining suggestions from teachers on the school reopening response to the pandemic. The suggestions ranged from having at least one nurse in every school and increasing communication from the top down so schools in every district get up-to-date information of how to safely reopen. Mangrum also supports universal pre-K and prioritizing recruitment of educators of color to expand equity.
Catherine Truitt (R): Truitt currently serves as the chancellor of Western Governors University North Carolina and spent 10 years teaching at the high school and middle school levels. On reopening, Truitt has supported an individualized approach wherein local districts would decide when to reopen rather than a statewide mandate. Truitt also supports universal pre-K and opposes a cap on the number of charter schools. She also supports funding for police officers in schools and was recently endorsed by the Police Benevolent Association.
Dale Folwell (R, i): Formerly a state lawmaker and self-proclaimed conservative from Forsyth County, Folwell is completing his first term as state treasurer. Folwell may be best known as the Council of State member who experienced a near-death bout with COVID-19 early in the pandemic, but his tenure as treasurer has been distinguished by his effort to move the State Health Plan to a government pricing model that would save the state money. But he had to back down because no major healthcare systems would sign on. Regardless, Folwell has secured the critical endorsement of the State Employees Association of North Carolina.
Ronnie Chatterji (D): A Duke University economist who previously served on the White House Council of Economic Advisors under President Obama, Chatterji promotes a kind of woke capitalism as the author of Can Business Save the Earth? Chatterji presents a stark alternative to Folwell, pledging to appoint a nonpartisan chief investment officer, increase the share of retirement funds invested in stocks, and use the state’s Venture Capital Multiplier Fund to invest in start-ups in North Carolina.
NC Supreme Court
Chief justice (Seat 1)
Cheri Beasley (D, i): Beasley has held this seat since March 2019 after Gov. Roy Cooper appointed her when Mark Martin retired and has been a member of the Supreme Court since 2012 when she became the first Black woman to hold the position. Beasley believes in using technology to modernize the court system and thinking about student misconduct differently to keep students out of the courtroom, according to her campaign website. Beasley also told NC Policy Watch that she developed a commission to address racial disparities within the court system and she also co-chairs the Governor’s Task Force for Racial Equity in Criminal Justice with Attorney General Josh Stein.
Paul Newby (R): Newby, who grew up in Jamestown and attended Ragsdale High School, has served as a justice on the Supreme Court since 2005 He’s also an adjunct law professor at Campbell Law School. In July 2019, Newby made disparaging comments about his six Democratic colleagues on the court, comparing them to US Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. When the court recognized a claim of racial discrimination in jury selection in May, Newby was the sole dissenter, according to the online magazine Facing South. Newby also previously criticized the Racial Justice Act for halting executions.
Phil Berger Jr. (R): Phil Berger Jr., the son of Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, currently serves as an associate judge on the state Court of Appeals, a position he has held since 2017. He has described himself as a “law and order” judge, aligning himself closely with President Trump’s rhetoric, much like his father. Berger also supported Trump’s nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court after the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Berger was recently endorsed by the NC Values Coalition, a Christian, conservative organization that advocates for pro-life and anti-LGBTQ+ policies.
Lucy Inman (D): Lucy Inman has served as a judge on the Court of Appeals since 2015. Inman has received endorsements from organizations across the spectrum including the Police Benevolent Association, the NC Association of Educators and Equality NC. In a NC Policy Watch interview, Inman acknowledged the existence of racial disparities within the court system and supported an increase in funds for appointed counsel, waiving of fees and costs for low-wealth and indigent people. In January, Inman’s son, William Warden, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges stemming from 2018 threats against a Cary synagogue, as reported by the News and Observer.
Mark Davis (D, i): Davis has held this seat since 2019. Before that, he served as a judge on the Court of Appeals starting in 2013. Davis was the first Jewish justice of the Supreme Court and told Attorney at Law Magazine that his faith is very important to him. He also said that he finds lack of access to justice to be a major problem within the legal system and wants to increase funding for indigent clients.
Tamara Barringer (R): Barringer formerly represented Wake County’s District 17 in the state Senate from 2013 to 2019. Barringer currently serves as an associate professor of legal studies at UNC-Chapel Hill and was a partner at Barringer Law Firm. According to an article in the Gaston Gazette, Barringer’s past work includes advocating for foster children. She and her husband fostered children for a decade, and she said she hopes to continue that work as an associate justice.
NC Court of Appeals
Tricia Shields (D): A North Carolina native, Shields graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 1985. She runs her own practice and has taught a course on trial advocacy at Campbell Law School for the past seven years. According to an interview with NC Policy Watch, Shields acknowledged that racial disparities exist within the court system, and stated that judges should engage in implicit bias training. She also advocated for continuing remote hearings to reduce the potential backlog of court hearings after the pandemic is over.
April C. Wood (R): Wood was first elected to serve as a district court judge in 2002. She maintained a private law practice in Thomasville prior to being elected to the court and is the daughter of retired Davidson County Deputy Sheriff Dan Wood. In an NC Policy Watch interview, Wood avoided outright answering whether systemic racism exists within the judicial system, instead stating that “everyone should be treated equally.” Wood describes herself as a conservative Republican on her Facebook and advocated for in-person learning for kids this fall.
Lora Christine Cubbage (D): Cubbage currently serves on the superior court bench in Guilford County. She’s previously served as an assistant district attorney, assistant attorney general and district court judge. Cubbage graduated from NC A&T University and went to law school at UNC-Chapel Hill. According to an NC Policy Watch article, Cubbage supports implicit bias training for judges.
Fred Gore (R): Gore currently serves as a district court judge and as a JAG officer in the North Carolina National Guard, according to his campaign website. He joined the National Guard as an infantry soldier and was deployed multiple times to the Middle East. He previously served as an assistant district attorney and said in an interview with the North Carolina Free Enterprise Foundation that the late Antonin Scalia’s judicial philosophy best matches his own when it comes to business and economics.
Chris Dillon (R, i): Of the five seats on the Court of Appeals up for election this year, Dillon has the longest tenure, having been elected in 2012. If re-elected, he would be the second-most senior judge on the court. Dillon notes that when he was first elected, Court of Appeals elections were nonpartisan and publicly financed, and he believes that arrangement should be restored. In response to a survey by NC Policy Watch, Dillon said he could not comment “on whether the justice system is racist.”
Gray Styers (D): Styers cites 30 years of experience as a lawyer, beginning as a clerk for federal appellate Judge Sam J. Ervin, as qualifying him to serve North Carolinians as a member of the state Court of Appeals. Like his opponent, Styers says he’s committed to independent jurisprudence and upholding the law. He said he believes that systemic racism exists and that it manifests in the justice system as a part of broader society.
Reuben F. Young (D, i): Young was appointed to the Court of Appeals by Gov. Roy Cooper in April 2019. Prior to his appointment, Young served as the chief deputy secretary for adult corrections and juvenile justice. Young told UNC-TV he always tries to remember that there’s a person behind every case. “My philosophy is we have to accept people where they are,” he said, “not where we want them to be, because all of us come from different places and travel different journeys, and we have to respect the litigants — the parties that come before us.”
Jeff Carpenter (R): Carpenter is currently the senior resident judge in Union County, and before that worked as a state trooper. “As a judge, what the folks see with me is the same person they’d see in the grocery store,” Carpenter said in an interview with UNC-TV. “I believe that judges should be genuine and authentic…. I also believe, from my background, that everyone deserves to be treated the same under the law.”
Chris Brook (D, i): Formerly a staff for the ACLU of North Carolina, Brook was appointed to the Court of Appeals in April 2019 by Gov. Roy Cooper. Prior to his time at the ACLU, Brook worked for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, where he represented residents of northeast Greensboro who successfully blocked the reopening of the White Street Landfill. Brooks says it’s important that “everyone who appears in our courtroom continues to be treated fairly and with respect.”
Jefferson G. Griffin (R): A Wake County district court judge, Griffin is also a North Carolina Army National Guard JAG officer, and was recently deployed with the 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team. Griffin says he is guided by the values of “Constitution-first rulings,” “protecting the rule of law,” “integrity in the courtroom” and “service to our community.”
Amy Galey (R): An Alamance County commissioner, Galey is seeking to succeed fellow Republican Rick Gunn, who is retiring from the state Senate, for the District 24 seat, which covers all of Alamance County and an eastern slice of Guilford. The controversy over the Confederate monument in front of the Historic Courthouse in Graham has thrust Galey in the spotlight. The commission has resisted calls to remove the monument. As a senator, Galey says she will cut taxes and support school choice.
JD Wooten (D): An Air Force veteran and lawyer, Wooten has found himself on the defensive from accusations by the GOP that he misused a Veterans Administration loan program to buy a house in Greensboro (there’s no evidence that he did anything wrong). Like other Democrats, Wooten would vote to expand Medicaid and said he’s open to raising the corporate tax rate to finance expanded investments in public education. He’s a longshot, but analysts say District 24 could become competitive if the presidential election turns out Democratic voters who normally stay at home.
David Craven (R): Jerry Tillman, a powerful lawmaker who chaired the Education Committee, represented District 26, covering the entirety of Randolph County and the southern half of High Point, for 18 years. When Tillman retired in June, David Craven, a local bank vice president and former chairman of the Randolph County Republican Party, was appointed to fill his seat. The Craven campaign doesn’t have much of a digital presence, but he probably doesn’t need it in District 26, a GOP stronghold that covers the entirety of Randolph County and the southern half of High Point.
Jane Ledwell-Gant (D): A retired administrative assistant at Randolph Cancer Center, Ledwell-Gant supports expanding Medicaid, arguing that it would help rural facilities like Randolph Hospital keep their doors open. She recently discussed the protests against racist policing, saying, “It’s hard for some to understand, I’m sure, if you have not experienced it. I have, as a Black mom. I know the lessons I’ve had to teach my son: ‘These are the things you can do and you can’t do…. You’re seeing it for yourself. You’re seeing Black, young men being killed that were not a danger to the police officer.”
Michael Garrett (D, i): Garrett ousted Republican Trudy Wade in a closely fought battle in 2018 that turned District 27 blue, and in this election it’s rated the third-most vulnerable Democrat-held seat. Garrett supports expanding Medicaid and overhauling the state’s tax code to restore an exemption on the first $50,000 earned by business startups. Like his opponent, Garrett supports raising teacher pay and a state school building bond.
Sebastian King (R): A vice president for a regional golfing magazine and former policy advisor for House Majority Whip Jon Hardister, King emphasized a “purple” governing strategy in an interview with TCB, but as the campaign has progressed he has also stoked the passions of the Republican base by calling for “defunding cities who defund the police,” despite the fact that virtually no North Carolina city council has heeded that demand from protesters.
Gladys Robinson (D, i): District 28, covering Greensboro, is one of the two safest Democratic districts in the state. Gladys Robinson, who has represented the district since 2011, is a virtual lock to win re-election. Legislation filed by Robinson with her Democratic colleague, Michael Garrett, including bills to allow the NC A&T University farm to sell dairy products and restoring the master’s pay supplement for teachers, have failed to gain traction.
DR King (R): This is Devin R. King’s second crack at the District 28 seat: In 2016, he lost by 77 points to Robinson. King has also made unsuccessful runs for Greensboro mayor and city council in the past.
Joyce Krawiec (R, i): Joyce Krawiec has represented District 31, which covers a portion of Forsyth County, along with Davie County, since she was appointed to replace Pete Brunstetter in 2014. Since then, Krawiec has established a track record as an ardent social conservative, sponsoring the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, a 2019 bill that was vetoed by Gov. Roy Cooper. However, Krawiec was able to find common ground with Democrats in supporting women’s legal right to withdraw consent from sexual intercourse.
Terri LeGrand (D): District 31 is key to Democrats’ hopes to retake control of the state House after 10 years of Republican rule. LeGrand, a Wake Forest University administrator who earned the endorsement of President Obama, is the party’s nominee. If elected, she says the first vote taken by a new Democratic majority will be to establish independent, nonpartisan redistricting, followed by Medicaid expansion and investments in job training.
Paul Lowe Jr. (D, i): A Winston-Salem pastor, Lowe has held the District 32 seat since 2015, when he was appointed to fill a vacancy with the retirement of the late Sen. Earline Parmon. During his time in the state Senate, Lowe has championed legislation to remove marijuana from the controlled substances list and restore film subsidies, but his tenure has not been without controversy. During a 2019 altercation with reporter Joe Killian, Lowe threw Killian’s phone across the room. Later reporting disclosed that the arguing from behind a closed door that attracted Killian’s attention was an exchange between Lowe and Sen. Erica Smith after Smith accused fellow lawmakers of bullying.
Ven Challa (R): A retired Wake Forest School of Medicine pathologist and immigrant from India, Challa self-published a book called The Great (But Foolish) American Middle Class. A prescription for policy changes at both the federal and state level, it seems to provide much of his platform, which includes abolishing the income tax for people earning less than $75,000, privatizing schools and official recognition of Christianity as the “majority” religion.
Ashton Clemmons (D, i): A former assistant school superintendent, Clemmons was first elected to the state House in 2018 after court-ordered redistricting essentially flipped the district from red to blue. The north Greensboro district is now considered a safe Democratic seat. In her first term, Clemmons established the Joint Early Childhood Caucus, a bipartisan group of legislators interested in advancing early childhood education.
Chris Meadows (R): An investment advisor and former first vice chair of the Guilford County Republican Party, Meadows’ platform emphasizes “efficiency” in educational spending by limiting funding for “bloated county bureaucratic administrations,” keeping taxes low and cracking down on undocumented immigrants. The pro-life candidate also says he would prevent “far left activists and judicial activists” from infringing on “freedom of speech on college campuses” and undercutting the Second Amendment.
Amos Quick (D, i): A pastor and former Guilford County School Board member, Quick has ascended to the position of Democratic Whip since he was elected to District 58 in southwest Greensboro four years ago. Despite being in the political minority, Quick says it’s important for Democrats to put forward an agenda so voters will know what they’ll do when they take the majority. As a member of the House Select Committee on Community Relations, Law Enforcement and Justice, Quick proposes “an early warning system to flag officers with a history of discipline problems,” allowing police review boards with subpoena power, and a statewide ban on chokeholds.
Clinton Honey (R): The heavy Democratic lean of District 58 makes it a longshot for any Republican candidate, and the digital footprint of Honey’s campaign is virtually nonexistent, suggesting he’s not making a huge effort to win converts. The cover photo on his Facebook page depicting the outline of an AR rifle with an American flag fill should give you some indication of his interests. That and multiple posts depicting himself firing guns, assembling guns and talking about his desire to buy more guns, leavened by posts expressing sympathy for the Proud Boys and mocking criticism of President Trump’s handling of COVID-19.
Jon Hardister (R, i): A member of the Republican leadership team, Hardister serves as majority whip. Over the course of his four terms in the House, Hardister has promoted bipartisan initiatives to loosen regulations on alcohol sales and distilling, but has angered Guilford County constituents by supporting the anti-trans HB 2 legislation in 2016, among other GOP initiatives. Hardister is noncommittal on Medicaid expansion — a sticking point in past budget negotiations — but has expressed willingness to revisit a law restricting access to police body-camera video.
Nicole Quick (D): District 59, covering the eastern end of Guilford County, is one of three considered “pivotal” in Democrats’ quest to retake control of the state House. A former chair of the Guilford County Democratic Party, Quick said she was motivated to get involved in politics because of her son, who is on the autism spectrum, and was not able to get proper support in Guilford County Schools due to state funding restrictions. She wants to increase funding for teacher salaries and expand Medicaid.
Cecil Brockman (D, i): District 60, which runs from High Point up to the western outskirts of Greensboro, is the most competitive of the four Democrat-held districts in Guilford County, but still heavily favors three-term incumbent Brockman. He favors expanding Medicaid, raising the minimum wage and further investments in public education.
Frank Ragsdale (R): A long-haul trucker, Ragsdale defeated farmer Ryan Blankenship in the Republican primary, earning the opportunity to challenge Brockman. In an interview with WXII last February, Ragsdale broke with his party by saying he supports Medicaid expansion and said the Republican proposal to raise teacher pay by 4 percent over two years is insufficient. But he supports President Trump, based on false belief that the national deficit has been cut since he took office.
John Faircloth (R, i): A former High Point police chief and city council member, Faircloth has risen through the ranks to chair the Appropriations Committee since he was first elected in 2010. One of Faircloth’s signature legislative accomplishments, a bill to restrict public access to police body-camera video without a judicial order, has come under increasing criticism, with even Republican colleague Jon Hardister saying he favors repeal. A provision of the same bill that restricted access to police video also decriminalized needle exchanges. It was widely hailed as an important move towards harm reduction when it passed in 2016.
Brandon Gray (D): An openly gay candidate, Gray garnered national attention in July when he made a viral Facebook post about being victimized by a homophobic assault at Walmart on Wendover Avenue in Greensboro. Gray said he and his boyfriend were picking up a tank top for his grandmother when a woman called them “disgusting queer faggots” and tried to choke his boyfriend. The woman faces a misdemeanor assault charge. Gray supports Medicaid expansion, independent redistricting, marijuana legalization and protections against employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Amber Baker (D): Formerly the principal at Kimberley Park Elementary, Baker defeated LaShun Huntley in the Democratic primary for House District 72, which opened up with the current representative, Derwin Montgomery’s unsuccessful run for Congress. Baker’s campaign website does not include a platform, but the candidate told TCB in January that affordable housing and public education are priorities.
Dan Lawlor (R): Like his opponent, Lawlor is an educator: He works with exceptional children at Reynolds High School to equip them for the workforce. He wants to see more focus on vocational training, and pitches himself as a bipartisan bridge-builder by saying he admires the leadership of both Republican Vice President Mike Pence and New York’s Democratic governor, Andrew Cuomo, in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lee Zachary (R, i): Zachary is currently serving his third term in the state House and was the primary sponsor of five bills in 2020, according to our legislative issue. Some notable bills that Zachary sponsored included House Bill 54 which would have banned the most common and safest method of second-trimester abortions. Zachary also regularly posts on Facebook disparaging protesters such as those in Asheville who call for the defunding of police departments.
William Stinson (D): This is Stinson’s fifth time running for political office and his second time running against Zachary for this seat. The last time, in 2018, Zachary won by about 7 percentage points. Stinson is a Democratic farmer who once called HB 2 “the most embarrassing piece of legislation passed in the last 50 years.” In past interviews, Stinson has pointed to education funding as his primary motivation for running for office.
Dan Besse (D): Former Rep. Debra Conrad’s political retirement opened the District 74 seat in western Forsyth County. It’s one of three Republican-held seats (along with District 59 in Guilford County and District 82 in Kannapolis) that are considered “pivotal” for Democrats’ quest to seize control of the House. Besse, a longtime member of Winston-Salem City Council, is part of a national slate of Democratic candidates endorsed by President Obama. “If Democrats win this fall in North Carolina, we will have redistricting reform,” said Besse, who also supports Medicaid expansion.
Jeff Zenger (R): A commercial and residential builder who formerly served on Lewisville Town Council, Zenger accuses his Democratic opponent supports defunding the police — a charge that’s hard to make stick considering that the Winston-Salem City Council resisted calls to reallocated funds from police and Besse is one of a few Democratic candidates endorsed by the Police Benevolent Association. Zenger supports school choice and says he would protect North Carolinians’ right to bear arms.
Donny C. Lambeth (R, i): A former Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board member, Lambeth has risen through the ranks since his election in 2012 to chair the Health Committee, while also serving as a senior chairman of the powerful Appropriations Committee. A retired healthcare executive, Lambeth has tried to work around his party’s aversion to Medicaid expansion. In 2019, he filed a bill described by House Speak Tim Moore as “a kind of Medicaid expansion” with work requirements, but it failed to gain traction. Lambeth describes himself as a “fiscally responsible” lawmaker who has led Medicaid reforms that reduce costs and improve outcomes, particularly in mental health services.
Elisabeth Motsinger (D): A Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board member, Motsinger acknowledges that the partisan lean of suburban District 75 doesn’t favor her. During a candidate forum before she defeated primary opponent Gardenia Henley, Motsinger said that if she wins the District 75 seat, “that means the Democrats are in charge. And it means we have to be focused and immediately work to pass Medicaid expansion.” Motsinger also wants to expand a $15 minimum wage for state workers to also include public education employees.
District Court, District 28 (Forsyth County)
Whit Davis (D): Currently serving as an assistant public defender, Davis is vying for the judicial seat currently held by retiring Judge Laurie Hutchins. “Through my work as an assistant public defender representing indigent clients, I have dealt with the problems affecting the most vulnerable members of our community, such as drug and alcohol addiction, mental health issues that often go untreated, and the seemingly never-ending cycle of the collateral consequences of poverty,” Davis says, adding that it’s not enough to solely “practice law,” but it’s also often necessary to come up with “creative alternatives, with the end goal of setting each person up for success.”
Mike Silver (R): Before taking a position as a deputy commissioner with the NC Industrial Commission, where he makes rulings in workers’ compensation cases, Silver worked as an assistant district attorney in Forsyth County and taught criminal justice at Winston-Salem State University. Silver cities his volunteer work, including serving on the board of RiverRun International Film Festival and mentoring with Big Brothers Big Sisters, to make the case that “his lifelong dedication to public service and volunteering shows that he is a person who wants to be an active participant in our growing and changing society.”
Guilford County Commission
Carly Cooke (D):Cooke said in an interview in August that she was disappointed in the county commissioners’ decision to pass a $300 million bond referendum when the original ask from the school board was for $1.6 billion. She also advocated for more support staff in schools and would suggest having a standing joint-facilities committee to regularly discuss how to make school repairs throughout the district.
Troy Lawson (R):Lawson previously served as the chairman of the Guilford County Republican Party and ran unsuccessfully for state House two years ago. Like Cooke, Lawson expressed concern over the state of school facilities but ultimately supported the Republican-majority board of commissioners’ decision to vote for a $300 million bond. In a February interview, Lawson said one of his biggest priorities was maintaining the Republican majority on the board.
Read additional reporting on this race here and here.
Jim Davis (R): Davis, a former High Point city council member, told TCB in past interviews that his main reason for running for county commission was to help fund public schools. In August, he supported kids returning to in-person learning and said he was happy with President Trump’s handling of the coronavirus while he believed that Gov. Roy Cooper had been too strict. Davis also said that he supports having officers in schools and stated concerns about the opioid crisis for residents countywide.
James Upchurch (D): Upchurch is a former public-school teacher who told TCB in August that he was disappointed with the final amount voted on by the current board of commissioners for the school bond. He said that would support a future bond and also said that kids should only return to in-person learning if it could be done safely. Upchurch also supported Gov. Cooper’s handling of the pandemic while disparaging Trump’s leadership in the last few months. Upchurch also said that he doesn’t think police officers in schools are the best way to keep students safe and supported finding a more “wholesome approach.”
Read additional reporting on this race here and here.
Forsyth County Commission
District B (three seats)
David Plyler (R, i): Plyler has served on the Forsyth County Commission since 1994, albeit with a gap from 2006 to 2008, when he lost a re-election. Currently serving as chair, he’s shepherded a number of significant capital projects, including a renovated library in downtown Winston-Salem and new courthouse that’s on the drawing board. Considered a moderate Republican, Plyler nonetheless caused an outcry when he reshared a Facebook post over the Fourth of July holiday that showed a photo of an indigenous family giving the middle finger to Mount Rushmore, accompanied by the text “Hate America? Get the hell out!” Plyler didn’t apologize, but conservative voters in rural-suburban District B probably won’t penalize him for it.
Richard V. Linville (R, i): A farmer from the rural, northeastern corner of Forsyth County, Linville has served on the county commission since 1980, earning a reputation not only for fiscal conservatism but also as a cautious consensus-builder. Among the issues that consume him is sustaining rural fire departments. “The commissioners as a whole in the last two years has worked on some issues related to that,” he said during a candidate forum earlier this year. “So, whenever issues come up that has to have extra attention, that’s what we do: We try to work it out.”
Gloria D. Whisenhunt (R, i): Like her Republican colleagues, Whisenhunt is a mainstay on the commission. After building a political constituency from her hair salon clientele, Whisenhunt ran for Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board in 1990, setting the stage for her election to county commission in 1996. During a candidate forum earlier this year she said she wants to focus on workforce development, expressing reservations about providing tax incentives to large employers if there isn’t a capable labor force to fill the jobs, and on reducing the county’s tax rate.
Gull Riaz (D): Unfortunately, there isn’t much digital media available on Riaz’s candidacy. A Kernersville resident and paralegal at Woodruff Family Law Group, Riaz has a campaign website, but it doesn’t reveal much about his platform, aside from his expressed desire “to help ensure that Forsyth County continues to be a special place for families to live, work and thrive by working tirelessly to solve problems that affect us all.”
Christopher Smith (D): Like fellow Democrat Eric Weiss, Smith has been campaigning since the beginning of the year, even though there weren’t enough candidates to fill a primary slate for the three seats in District B. A former Army intelligence officer, the self-described “progressive” says he’s “running on a platform of change,” noting that the three incumbents have all been in office for more than 20 years. A father with a young child in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools, Smith said during a Zoom call hosted by Young Democrats of Forsyth County on Sunday: “We are second to last in the nation for youth upward mobility. And so I’m running to change that for my community.”
Eric Weiss (D): A 27-year-old design engineer at Collins Aerospace, Weiss boasts, “I am the left-most Democrat running for office in the Triad.” It’s likely you won’t find another Dem that says this: “We need to defund the police as a step to abolition, because the police work for capitalists and not really for the people…. We need to de-commodify housing because everyone deserves a place to live.” Weiss is one of the most visible candidates due to his activism, and can be found reading letters from inmates during a protest outside the Forsyth County jail or ensuring the safety or people protesting Trump’s recent visit to Winston-Salem. There are three seats up for election in District B and Weiss makes it clear he’s not in competition with fellow Democrat Chris Smith. “You can vote for both of us,” he says. “We can both win.”
Guilford County School Board
Pat Tillman (R, i):Tillman, who works in business development, has held his seat on the school board since 2016. A former Marine, Tillman emphasized his record from the past four years in an interview from September and said his work helped secure funding for five new CTE, or career technical education, programs to help students find work after graduation. Tillman supported reopening schools as soon as possible, citing a growing achievement gap. He also told TCB that he supports having officers in schools and said that officers prevent students from ending up in the criminal justice system.
Blake E. Odum (D):Educator Blake E. Odum told TCB that he’s running for school board because he believes he has better experience to fulfill his duties compared to Tillman. Odum supported a slow and careful approach to sending students back to schools and also supported the school board’s measure to allow parents and students to appeal short-term suspensions to the superintendent’s office. He stated that having officers in each school may not be the solution and that he wants to see more support staff like psychologists in schools as well.
Read additional reporting on this race here.
Michelle Bardsley (R): Bardsley previously taught in Guilford County Schools for 12 years and now works in the Wake County school system. She said her experience as an educator makes her the best fit for the seat. She cited concerns about a growing achievement gap for students during the pandemic and told TCB she supports having officers in schools. She said she wants to see more funding for school facilities and wants to prioritize educator professional development.
Deborah Napper (U): A nurse, Napper told TCB she is running for school board because she has two kids in the school system and has seen firsthand things she’d like to improve just as school facilities. Despite being unaffiliated, Napper said she more closely aligns with the Democratic party and said that if officers are in schools, they shouldn’t be armed. She also advocated for more nurses in schools and mental health counseling for students.
Read additional reporting on this race here.
Guilford County Register of Deeds
Jeff L. Thigpen (D, i): Thigpen has run the Register of Deeds office since 2004, running unopposed in 2008 and 2012. Thigpen, a former county commissioner who served from 1998 to 2004, advocated for public education during his tenure. At the Register of Deeds office, he helped hold the financial industry accountable for fraud and forgery public land records and established the Slave Deeds project to help genealogists locate slave records.
Abdul Rashid Siddiqui (R):Not much could be found about Siddiqui except that he is from High Point. The Rhino Times recently reported that Siddiqui has worked with chemical companies as a research and development manager but doesn’t appear to have experience in real estate or government record keeping.
Winston-Salem City Council
Allen Joines (D, i): An iconic mayor who presided over the revitalization of downtown Winston-Salem, recovery from the Great Recession, and now a global pandemic, Joines prevailed in a bruising primary against JoAnne Allen. The five-term mayor’s campaign message now is the same as it was when he won his primary — roughly a month before the onset of the pandemic. He’s proud of the new investment and the “vibrancy and excitement” manifesting across downtown, but he’s about more than just business, noting a commitment to reducing chronic homelessness beginning in 2010 and an effort to reduce poverty launched in 2017.
Kris McCann (R): McCann announced plans to run for mayor in August 2019 while addressing Winston-Salem City Council to express his opposition to dropping the name “Dixie” from the city’s annual fair. McCann’s remarks included a bizarre detour accusing Councilman Dan Besse of being willing to subject residents to “walking in the feces of illegal immigrants” because he had championed a symbolic resolution to call Winston-Salem a “welcoming city.” McCann concluded: “And, yes sir, I am entitled to my heritage, even though you don’t think that I am, and I intend to act on it. I intend to exercise [sic] a committee looking at the possibility of running for mayor of this community.” More recently, McCann has been called out for Facebook posts disparaging Black Lives Matter. But just so everyone is clear, he insists he’s no racist.
James Taylor (D, i): Taylor, who was first elected to city council in 2009, chairs the Public Safety Committee, where he sets a moderate tone in matters of official accountability, both keeping an open door to hear concerns while expressing confidence in the city’s police and fire departments. When Black firefighters came forward in July to complain about racism by white commanders, Taylor pledged that “systemic racism will be rooted out” while also professing the belief that Winston-Salem has “one of the best fire departments in the country.”
Wesley Longsdorf (R): A professional DJ and software engineer, Longsdorf says he wants to reduce fees and startup costs to promote entrepreneurship in the Southeast Ward. In the wake of George Floyd’s death, Longsdorf has adopted a position that somehow straddles a line between Democratic acknowledgement of systemic racism and GOP demagoguery. He writes on his campaign website that “some of the duties” police office officers “are expected to perform daily put them and others in harm’s way,” while pledging to “work with our community to hear you and understand our needs and take the necessary steps to reform our justice system.”
Guilford County Soil and Water Conservation District supervisor
Ray Briggs (i): Incumbent Ray Briggs first joined the soil and water conservation district in 2012 and has held the position of secretary-treasurer for years. According to a Facebook post by the conservation district, Briggs was born in High Point and worked for the UPS for 35 years before retiring.
Karen Coble Albright: The only information TCB could find about Karen Coble Albright was from her candidate filing, which shows that she is from Pleasant Garden, and a 2008 profile from IndyWeek. The article highlights Albright’s marketing and commodification of a family BBQ sauce and how she began selling the product in stores.
Dave Crawford: Dave Crawford is no stranger to running for political office. In the past two decades, Crawford has unsuccessfully run for city council in Greensboro and Winston-Salem, for the Guilford County School Board and for the Guilford County Soil and Water Conservation District most recently in 2018. Two years ago, he came in eighth place out of nine candidates who were running for the seat.
Willard Robbins: The only information TCB could find about Willard Robbins was from his candidate filing, which shows he’s from Greensboro and has owned a company called Redi Framing LLC since 2015.
Antoinette Weaver: At the age of 23, Antoinette Weaver is likely the youngest candidate in this race and possibly on the ballot. Weaver is an earth and environmental sustainability studies graduate from UNCG who said they are running for the district to increase environmental awareness, create environmental education and support environmental justice. They worked for Greenpeace USA in the past and posted on their campaign Facebook page that they support creating a community garden and compost program for Guilford County Schools.
William Zachary White: According to an article by the Times-News in Burlington, former Greensboro police officer William Zachary White was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2018 on two counts of possession of an unregistered firearm for a modified AM-15 rifle and three homemade silencers. Investigators also found thousands of rounds of ammo which they believe were stolen from the Greensboro police department. White had been employed by the department since May 2010 and was briefly a member of the SWAT unit. He was fired in early March 2018. The federal complaint against White, according to the Times-News article, noted that investigators said White could become dangerous and homicidal. Prior to the federal indictment, White was also charged with stealing high-value lawn equipment from Scott’s Tractor in 2016. The charges were dismissed in 2017 after White admitted to the theft.
GUILFORD COUNTY BOND REFERENDA
Guilford County School Bond Referendum
Would authorize $300 million in bonds to improve existing public-school facilities as well as acquire land for and construct new school buildings. Payment for the school bond would be in the form of an increase in sales tax in the next question.
Guilford County Local Sales and Use Tax
Would authorize raising the local sales and use tax by 0.25 percent to help pay for the school bond.
Find more reporting on the referenda here, here and here.
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