NC House and Senate votes during special session #ncga #ncpol

Some citizens on Twitter were requesting a list of #NCGA Representatives/Senators voting records against their re-election dates. All Senators and Reps go up for re-election in 2018, but with the US District Court decision in November, 28 districts must be redrawn and a special election held in March. Redistricting could, and is likely to, impact more than those 28 districts. All are assuming (I would assume) that they are going to need to run in the special election.

So, here is a spreadsheet of the House and Senate votes during the special session. I have linked to the webpages with the roll call and bill information for each bill in the top of each column. The most significant bills were HB 17 and SB 4. I will get to the Senate later tonight. If you see any mistakes or have questions, just tweet me at @lyndamk

We (the UNCG documents manager and I) have also created a spreadsheet with the contact info, social media links, and google news feeds for all Senators and Representatives. You can use this to contact your elected officials. If you don’t know your district, use this map.

An interesting thing to note is the lack of unity among the Democrats. This could indicate that people are less ideologically driven and more attuned to their constituents, but we need to start asking why they decided to vote the way they did. Your leaders should try to represent a wide base of constituent interests. If they don’t, hold them accountable and work to unseat them by speaking out, volunteering, donating, and voting.

Down ballot elections are your daily life. Never forget what your local and state leaders do.

Addition: If you want to run for NCGA, check out this FACT sheet from the NC State Board of Elections or if you want to run for local office.

Keeping up with North Carolina politics #ncga

My awesome docs manager, Susan Farr, and I updated our NC politics page with lots of links. Feel free to submit suggestions in the Google Form at the top of the page. More goodies will be coming.
We also have a spreadsheet of all NC Reps and Senators with contact info, social media links, and google news feed, but still working on populating that. We are about halfway done, but feel free to use it now.
To be rather than to seem

Serena Serena

Serena is one scary, scary woman. serena

I loved Serena by Ron Rash except on the nights after binge reading when I woke up from nightmares about jaguars and eagles and death. Yeah, not so much fun that. This book is not for the faint of heart. It is a brutal story, but not one that feels gratuitous like Game of Thrones can at times (After watching the Red Wedding I felt completely punk’d, but that’s a story for another day). It is a tragedy in the Shakespearean sense and, beyond its literary allusions, it is a gripping story.

Set in the Depression era North Carolina mountains, it is the story of a timber empire led by Serena and her new husband, Pemberton, and their machinations to become the most powerful (and frightening) couple in the forest. In so doing they compete with interests that would like to preserve the forests, as well as the surrounding impoverished community that is simultaneously beholden to the Pembertons for income and repulsed by their brutality. From the literary angle, there is a Greek chorus timber crew that comments on the action throughout while simultaneously trying to survive under horrific conditions (cold, falling limbs, death) where nature is an adversary and rarely a friend.

While it is almost impossible (for me at least) to relate to Serena, her husband is a much more sympathetic character. When he attempts to help his illegitimate child, he unfortunately stirs the ire of Serena, which leads the plot to its closing. At the same time that I can’t relate to her as a character, I absolutely loved reading this book and count it as one of my recent favorites. I can’t image Jennifer Lawrence as Serena in the upcoming film, but I will definitely be one of the first to see it. Here’s hoping it’s as good as the book.