Updates on:

  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • Republican Obstructionism
  • Vote411.org – for complete information on judicial races
  • HB 539 – Stripping our public schools of funding
  • Early voting begins May 26

Short-handed Supreme Court punts on question of contraception access

A divided Supreme Court has opted not to rule on a controversial case that would limit access to birth control. The court was split 4-4, with half in favor of allowing employers to refuse to inform employees or the government about their religious objections to contraception.

•The split ruling means that for the time being, employers who opt out of comprehensive insurance for women will have to notify the government, and employees will receive birth control coverage directly from the insurance company.

•This win for women’s health is directly attributable to the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, who undoubtedly would have voted in favor of limiting access. It’s only the latest example of how the Republican-controlled Senate’s politically-motivated refusal to fill Scalia’s vacant seat is preventing the Supreme Court from issuing definitive rulings on important cases.

•Unfortunately, this tepid victory for women’s rights could be short-lived. The Supreme Court will likely reconsider this case once Scalia’s seat has been filled — which makes the next presidential election even more critical for reproductive rights supporters.

Bottom Line: Women should not be held hostage by the political and religious views of their employer. Employers already may refuse to provide contraception coverage themselves, but going one step further by preventing their employees from obtaining separate coverage through their insurance provider is simply a punitive attempt to control women’s bodies. (Source Progress NC Action)

Did you know that in the history of the United States 168 presidential nominees have been filibustered: 82 have been blocked under President Obama, and 86 were blocked under all the other presidents combined?

At last week’s Policy Watch Crucial Conversation when we had a conversation with nationally acclaimed scholar, author and commentator Michael Gerhardt regarding the Merrick Garland nomination and its implications for the U.S. Supreme Court, Naomi, Adrienne, and I learned much about the obstructionism the Republicans have used to stack the courts with conservative judges.
One source of information he shared was the website www.whycourtsmatter.org. It has some straightforward infographics, a video, and more that address this persistent ill.

“Obstruction and delay has been one of the right’s go-to plays in opposition to President Obama’s administration. Instead of governing, extremist Republicans have used the political tactic of shutdown in an attempt to stop the core functions of our government. The GOP obstruction of the judicial nominations process is a clear example of how far the right will go to stop progress.” (Source www.whycourtsmatter.org)

Vote411.org
Election Information You Need
LWV Education Fund

Launched by the League of Women Voters Education Fund (LWVEF) in October of 2006, VOTE411.org is a “one-stop-shop” for election related information. It provides nonpartisan information to the public with both general and state-specific information on the following aspects of the election process:
Early voting options (where applicable)
Factual data on candidates in various federal, state and local races

electncjudges.org

The North Carolina Bar Association, through its Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee, conducts surveys that evaluate Superior and District Court judge candidates.

The survey results provide information on the candidate’s integrity and impartiality, legal ability, professionalism, communication, administrative skills and overall performance, and are published on this website prior to the primary and general elections

NC Supreme Court Associate Justice (Non‐Partisan State/Countywide)
This contest will be on every ballot in Wake County.

(You may vote for ONE)

Michael R. (Mike) Morgan
Daniel Robertson
Robert H. (Bob) Edmunds
Sabra Jean Faires

NC Superior Court Judge – District 10C (Non‐Partisan District 10C Only)
This contest will appear on every ballot for voters  residing in Superior Court District 10C.

NC Superior Court Judge
District 10C

(You may vote for ONE)

Rebecca (Becky) Holt
Hoyt Tessener
Karlene (K) Turrentine
Ronnie Ashley
Michael Denning

 Contact your legislators now to tell to oppose HB 539!
According to the NC Justice Center, this bill would divert millions of dollars of revenue from local public school districts to charter schools.
Specifically, HB 539 would deprive local public schools of the following types of funding:
Child nutrition indirect costs, even though charter schools are not required to provide Free or Reduced Price lunch
Fees received for use of school programs by outside groups (Includes after and before school programs run by the local school district)
Sales Tax Revenue regardless of how it is distributed (this will cause a large diversion of local funding to state-run charter schools in 5 districts)
Reimbursements, even though charter schools already receive a portion of funding from the original expenditures that are being reimbursed
Gifts and grants that are not restricted by the donor to be held in a specific fund for local schools
This will add to the administrative burden of understaffed central offices, requiring local school districts to ask anyone who gives them a grant to include language that expressly exclude charters or expressly restrict the grant to a particular school.
Federal appropriations made directly to local schools

Parents, educators, and everyone in North Carolina who cares about education should be very concerned about this bill. Our state’s future prosperity depends on making the right choices today.
ACT NOW to protect our state’s educational future against this destructive bill. (Source NC Justice Center)

Lillian’s List seeks a strong, politically expert, strategic leader to lead the organization through its next phase of growth.  Following the retirement of it long time inaugural Executive Director, the new leader will report to and work collaboratively with a 23-member Board of Directors to provide strategic and operational leadership.

The posting for Lillian’s List next Executive Director is officially open!  The link to the full position announcement and application instructions can be found at this link:  http://www.armstrongmcguire.com/apply
The link will take you to a page that lists the current searches that Armstrong McGuire is leading.   Simply click on Lillian’s List to go to the announcement.

Celebration for reaching 200 Likes on Facebook
We are delighted to note that the Politica NC Facebook page has reached 202 Likes.  Thanks to all of you who went to our Facebook page, looked on the left-hand side, and clicked on “Invite your friends to like this Page.”  Politica Susan Vebber is now contacting the folks that Like our Page to see if they are interested in joining or getting more information.  Thanks, Susan.

Lori Bush, Cary Town Council and friend of Politica NC, prepared this short video on Human Trafficking.  Based in North Carolina, Bush says “its the story of Ms. “Neet” Childs, and her survivors journey.  She is a beacon of light, and anything I can do to share her story will help the many women impacted by this issue.”
Take a look at the 7 min video at:  https://vimeo.com/159985546

Check out this article that tells how Speaker Moore held these same homophobic views when he ran for Student Government at UNC.  You can’t change the spots on a leopard.

http://www.dailytarheel.com/article/2015/01/nc-house-speaker-to-be-tim-moore-has-contentious-past