Political notebook: Candidate in 13th District challenges all to limit terms

Published 12:10 am Saturday, May 14, 2016

By Josh Bergeron 


Mooresville attorney George Rouco, a Republican candidate for the 13th Congressional District, has challenged his 16 opponents to commit to a term limit if elected.

Rouco’s request asks candidates to commit to a three-term limit — six years. Even if candidates don’t respond to Rouco’s request, he isn’t the only one who favors term limits. In interviews with the Salisbury Post, more than one candidate said they would serve in Congress for a limited number of years if elected.

“This new district needs to start off on the right foot,” Rouco said in a news release. “We don’t need just another career politician who is more interested in re-election than serving the people who elected him or her to public office in the first place.”

In a news release, Rouco said six years in Washington D.C. is enough. He said members of Congress should not serve longer than a president, limited to eight years.

“Washington isn’t going to change itself,” he said. “We have to make them change.”

The term limits pledge is relatively short. It says “career politicians seem more interested in their own re-election than serving the people who elected them in the first place.” There’s a blank spot for candidates to insert his or her name.

The primary election for North Carolina’s 13th District is June 7. It includes 17 total Republicans and five Democrats. The 13th District includes most of Iredell and parts of Rowan and Guilford counties. All of Davidson and Davie counties are in the 13th District.

NC remains at bottom in teacher pay

Teacher pay in North Carolina may be quickly rising, but it’s still in the bottom 10, according to data released this week.

In a news release, Gov. Pat McCrory’s office touted the pace of increases in teacher pay. Since the 2013-2014 school year, North Carolina has moved up six spots in average teacher pay. McCrory’s office said it’s the single-biggest improvement of any state in the country. The rankings released Friday by the National Education Association also include Washington D.C. teachers.

States that rank below North Carolina for average teacher pay include: Missouri, New Mexico, Louisiana, Utah, West Virginia, Arizona, Idaho, Oklahoma, Mississippi and South Dakota. The top state for average teacher pay is New York at nearly 78,000, according to the NEA’s statistics.

McCrory’s office said North Carolina would jump to 34th on the list if his proposal to raise average pay to $50,000 passes.

Reacting to the rankings, the North Carolina Education Association said elected officials need to make education a bigger priority.

“Instead of using a surplus budget for more tax cuts for corporation and the wealthy, we should be investing in our public school students, educators and schools,” said NCAE President Rodney Ellis.

Hudson votes for opiod abuse bills

After voting in favor of a package of bills to combat the opiod abuse epidemic, U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson, R-8, said the issue demands a national response.

There’s a total of 18 bills included in the package, ranging from addiction to pain management best practices. On Friday, the U.S. House passed the opiod bills. Now the House and Senate will work out differences before sending the measures to President Barrack Obama’s desk.

After the passage of the package of bills, Hudson said the bills are important steps to end opiod abuse.

“This legislation addresses different parts of the opioid epidemic while ensuring our tax dollars are used responsibly,” he said in a news release. “While we are working to address the opioid epidemic on a federal front, there is still much more work to do, and I will continue to pray for those who are suffering from this crisis.”

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.