At the North Carolina Senate District 9 Candidates’ Forum at WHQR last night, Republican Senator Thom Goolsby and his Democratic opponent Deb Butler accused one another of hypocrisy, lying, mud-slinging, and complaining. So when panelist Cacky Catlett asked how they would talk to families who aren’t interested in politics as usual, the answer, as WHQR’s Rachel Lewis Hilburn reports, quickly turned into -- well, politics as usual.
It started with an acknowledgment from the candidates:
“Well, I tell you, you know we have suffered horrible division – political division like no other in my lifetime. And it is so regrettable.”
“I have put politics aside for the last two years in working hard to pass legislation that actually helps everyone across the board.”
And then the gloves came off.
“I find it interesting that my opponent… who described her race in the very beginning as a bare-knuckles brawl and has done nothing but attack me the entire time and offered up absolutely no solutions…”
Case in point, says Goolsby: Butler’s website offers little, he says, in the way of specifics. And Butler herself, says Goolsby, spends most of her effort going after Republicans.
Butler says it’s the Tea Partiers and ultra right-wingers who create the perception of a serious division between parties. She says nobody likes higher taxes or restrictive regulations. But somehow the Tea Party has co-opted those notions and made people think, according to Butler, that they’re the only ones with those concerns.
And when it comes to hypocrisy and wasteful spending, says Butler…
“The Senator went to Raleigh suggesting that he was the jobs senator and talking about eradicating wasteful spending. But among the first things he did was re-name a highway up here that cost thousands of dollars. And I’ll tell you right now – it’s nice to re-name a highway and honor our veterans. That’s great. But I’d rather honor them with a job when they get back.”