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Political notebook

A television program spurred U.S. Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) to take to the House floor to join the chorus of those opposed to bullying, according to a Coble press release Wednesday.
Coble said the Huckabee program on Fox News featured interviews with the victims of bullying and told the story of one who had committed suicide.
“Bullying, Mr. Speaker, has become a severely significant issue in some schools across our country,” Coble told his colleagues in the House of Representatives on Wednesday. “The victims of bullying, Mr. Speaker, become depressed and embarrassed, resulting in physical and emotional damage.”
According to the press release, Coble said bullies should be punished at their schools and by their parents, and prosecuted as juveniles if they are still minors.
“We should cut no slack to bullies. They deserve no slack,” Coble said. “Mr. Speaker, this bullying plague must be resolved, but it will be resolved only when the bullies receive the punishment they deserve.”
8th District candidate speaks at ‘Road to Repeal’ rally
John Whitley, neurosurgeon and Republican candidate for North Carolina’s 8th Congressional District, spoke at the “Road to Repeal” rally in Washington, D.C., last Saturday.
According to a press release sent by his campaign Monday, Whitley spoke on behalf of “physicians and healthcare professionals all over this wonderful country (who) are upset and angry at the unconstitutional takeover of medicine by this out of control government under the Obama, Anti-Democracy Administration.”
In his speech, Whitley also directed comments to the Supreme Court Justices, who are deliberating on the constitutionality of the health care reform law supported by President Barack Obama. He called on Justice Elena Kagan to recuse herself, the press release said, and he challenged the justices to “strike down the clearly unconstitutional legislation and stop America’s descent into socialism.”
Steen receives thumbs up from young Republicans
N.C. Rep. Fred Steen has received endorsements from two young Republican leaders, according to a press release sent Wednesday from Steen’s Congressional campaign.
Concord resident Andrew Kenny is chairman of the College Republicans at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Stanly resident Zach Almond is chair of the North Carolina Teenage Republicans. The press release said both are residents of the 8th District, where Steen is running for a seat in the U.S. House.
“Fred is the candidate that is from here, he is the candidate with the experience necessary to represent the 8th District and he is the only candidate with a conservative voting record,” Kenny said.
The press release said Almond helped build the Teenage Republicans organization in North Stanly High School.
“I support Rep. Steen because I believe that he will be a conservative, effective voice in Congress; just as he has been in the North Carolina legislature,” Almond said.
Rep. Kissell meets with masonry group
U.S. Rep. Larry Kissell met with members of the Carolinas Concrete Masonry Association recently in Washington. The group represents concrete block manufacturers in North and South Carolina.
Executive Director Byard Stevens was joined by Charles Newsome of Raeford, the Executive Vice President of Johnson Concrete, which has facilities in Concord, Lexington, Salisbury and Willow Spring.
“The construction industry is so important to getting our economy going,” Kissell said. “Companies like Johnson Concrete not only provide folks with jobs, but help to revitalize and better our communities.”
The masonry workers were in town to discuss H.R. 3395, legislation that would create a commodity check-off program similar to established check-off programs in other industries such as soybeans, pork, and milk. The program would allow the industry to promote and advocate for concrete products, and also invest in research development for concrete masonry.
Kissell, who represents North Carolina’s 8th District, is supportive of the program, and is a co-sponsor of the legislation.
Brain injury survivors, Kissell rally in Concord
Last Saturday, U.S. Rep. Larry Kissell joined hundreds of brain injury survivors and advocates to lead the second annual Charlotte Regional Walk & Roll-athon for brain injury awareness at Frank Liske Park in Concord.
Kissell joined local brain injury support groups from Concord, Union County, Rowan County and Charlotte at the event, which raises funds and awareness for the Brain Injury Association of North Carolina.
The nonprofit serves as a resource for individuals with brain injuries and their families. It helps those stricken with brain injury through support groups, rehabilitation programs and advocacy for research and legislation.
Kissell serves as co-chair of the Invisible Wounds Caucus, a group dedicated to supporting and protecting American veterans suffering from wounds that are not visible, including Traumatic Brain Injury and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Dan Forest campaign website receives recognition
Dan Forest’s campaign website in his race for North Carolina Lt. Governor has received an Honorable Mention in the 2012 Pollie Awards contest, according to a Feb. 14 press release.
The Pollie Awards, sponsored by the American Association of Political Consultants, annually recognize the “best of the best” in the political and public affairs industry. The Dan Forest campaign site was built and is managed by Charlotte-based Red Stampede, founded by Neal Harrington.
The American Association of Political Consultants is a nonpartisan organization of political professionals. Association membership consists of political consultants, media consultants, pollsters, campaign managers, corporate public affairs officers, professors, fund-raisers, lobbyists, congressional staffers and vendors.
EMILY’s List endorses 5 women candidates
EMILY’s List, a group that says it helps elect pro-choice Democratic women, on March 22 announced its endorsements of five women for statewide offices in North Carolina.
N.C. Rep. Linda Coleman, who is running for lieutenant governor; Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, the first woman to hold statewide office in North Carolina; Janet Cowell, the state’s first female treasurer; Beth Wood, North Carolina’s first female state auditor; and June Atkinson, the first woman to serve as the state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.
“We are thrilled to endorse so many strong women for statewide office in North Carolina — more than any other state this election cycle,” said Stephanie Schriock, President of EMILY’s List. “Linda, Elaine, Janet, Beth and June are all strong pro-choice Democratic women with the leadership experience North Carolina needs.”
EMILY’s List says its Political Opportunity Program has helped elect hundreds of women across the country since the program started in 2001.

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