Davis criticizes 13th District opponent for receiving ‘outside money’

Published 12:10 am Friday, June 24, 2016

By Josh Bergeron

SALISBURY — Democratic 13th Congressional District nominee Bruce Davis took direct aim at his Republican opponent on Thursday for being the beneficiary of nearly $500,000 in money from outside political groups.

Davis spoke to Rowan County Democrats during their regularly scheduled meeting, and accused outside political groups of buying an election for a candidate without experience in elected office.

“You can buy a primary, but you can’t buy a general election,” Davis said. “Once they buy him, they own him.”

A group called Club for Growth spent nearly $500,000 on behalf of 13th District Republican nominee Ted Budd, who lives in Davie County and owns a shooting range and gun shop. In the GOP race, candidates criticized Budd for being the beneficiary of “outside money.”

Davis doubled down on that criticism during his Thursday speech, and criticized Budd’s lack of experience — a factor that Budd and the Club for Growth touted during the primary.

“Let’s take my opponent, for example, Ted Budd — no experience as an elected official,”Davis said. “No skill in working across the aisle with other parties to come to an agreement that’s best for the people. He’s beholden to some wealthy individuals in some unknown place with deep pockets who would demand a return on their investment. That return will cost me and you 100 fold.”

Budd wasn’t the only candidate in the Republican primary that received money from a political action group. However, he received a larger amount than any other candidate in the 17-person race.

During his speech, Davis mentioned a number specific issues as important in the 13th District race, including: the economy, education, affordable college tuition, sensible immigration reform and gun control.

He said “every citizen should be able to find a job that pays a livable wage;” that every child should be able to attend a high-quality preschool; that we should “not leaving a mountain of debt for our young people that are trying so desperately to get a good, solid foundation;” that no family should be separated because a parent is undocumented; and preventing people on the no-fly list from purchasing a gun.

“This is about our community,” he said. “This is about having a representative that will stand up for you. So, let’s get out there and vote.”

Davis was asked about his stance on gun control after the speech and he said some “common-sense” measures are needed. Davis said he owns guns and believes the second amendment is important, but a certain amount of discretion is needed.

Davis and his wife own a child care center in High Point. He previously served in the Marine Corps for 20 years. Davis was also a Guilford County commissioner for multiple terms.

During the Democratic Primary, Davis beat Greensboro Developer Bob Isner by 112 votes.

On the Republican side, Budd nearly doubled the vote total of his closest competitor.

Davis and Budd will face off in the November general election.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.