The election season is finally upon us. Early voting started Oct. 20 with more locations being added this Thursday, Oct. 27.

We all know the importance of the presidential election, but there is a lot at stake at the local level, too. Controversial legislation like House Bill 2 (“The Bathroom Bill”), HB-972 (made it so that body and dash cam recordings are no longer public record), Medicaid expansion, and I-77 toll lanes all come from our state legislature representatives.

Information about the local elections can be scattered and difficult to find. This is why I founded VoteSmarterNC.com. I want to empower the community to know exactly who they’re voting for. Not just what they say, but how they actually vote.

Below is a quick guide of everyone running for N.C. House and Senate seats in Mecklenburg County.

Step 1: Find out your Senate and House district here.

Step 2: Find your districts below and see what the candidates care about.

N.C. Senate District 37

Jeff Jackson

Party: Democrat.
Website: jeffjacksonnc.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Did not vote — Said he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted against it.

Issues: Big focus on ending gerrymandering to ensure “a fair political process for all.” Wants to continue to invest in early education: “Every dollar that we invest in early childhood education can save seven dollars down the road. Teen pregnancy rates fall, incarceration rates fall. Welfare and health care spending falls.” Wants to expand Medicaid to “give the entire state quality, affordable health care.” Wants the state to grow jobs by investing in “broad-based economic development and renewable energy sources.”

Bob Diamond

Party: Republican.
Website: bobdiamondforstatesenate.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Said he would not try to repeal it.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for voting.

Issues: Pharmacist and Vietnam veteran. Campaigning on free market and limited government. Seeks to lower private-sector taxes, improve infrastructure, and work on regulatory reform. More funding for public and charter schools. More funding for police, jail, courts and district-attorneys.

N.C. Senate District 38

Joel Ford

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.votejoelford.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Absent — said he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Former businessman from the healthcare sector. Wants to grow economy by offering incentives to relocate more businesses here with penalties if the business does not stay (*cough* Chiquita *cough*). Wants to reduce tax rate and close loopholes. States importance of transportation/infrastructure, but doesn’t offer specifics.

Richard Rivette

Party: Republican.
Website: www.voterivette.biz.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Aims to create jobs through redevelopment, specifically west and north of the city. Big focus on attracting new businesses to “West side corridor including Beattie’s Ford Road.” Wants to reduce unemployment through attracting new business and retraining those displaced by the recession. Does not want to raise taxes on businesses. Will “forbid the NSA and federal government from using state resources to spy on NC citizens” and will “Lead a full investigation into the actions of the NSA and the federal government within the state of NC and prosecute any individuals whom are guilty of illegally spying on NC citizens”. He opposes any new legislation which would place unreasonable restrictions on ballot access. 

N.C. Senate District 39

Lloyd Scher

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.scher4ncsenate.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office to vote, but said he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: U.S. Army veteran. Background in business – started Video Taping Services in 1979, a media news company. Campaigning to raise teacher pay and increase transparency for charter schools. Condemns not renewing tax credit for movie and TV productions. 

Dan Bishop

Party: Republican.
Website: www.votedanbishop.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted for it (he was in the state House at the time) — would not support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted against it.

Issues: Big focus on continuing Republican control of GA. Intends to grow economy through private sector. Wants to continue cuts for personal and business income tax with goal of getting to “lowest east of the Mississippi.” Condemns “the pervasive welfare state.” Supports “lawful protections for the unborn and expectant mothers.”

N.C. Senate District 40

Joyce Waddell

Party: Democrat.
Websitewww.facebook.com/JoyceWaddellforNC40.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Absent – would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Former Board of Education member, big focus on education and women’s rights. Waddell worked in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School System for more than 21 years and is retired. Her service in the school system included media specialist, classroom teacher, counselor, staff development coordinator, principal and curriculum supervisor.

Marguerite Cooke

Party: Republican.
Website: No website.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

IssuesDoes not have a website and didn’t respond to questions from the Observer.

N.C. Senate District 41

Jonathan Hudson

Party: Democrat
Website: No website.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote but said he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Couldn’t find website or Facebook page, but you can see his answers to a set of Observer questions here.

Chris Cole

Party: Libertarian.
Website: No website.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Not in office for vote. “Undecided” on whether he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Not in office for vote.

Issues:Couldn’t find website or Facebook page, but you can see his answers to a set of Observer questions here.

Jeff Tarte

Party: Republican.
Website: www.jefftarte.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted for it. But in an interview recently, said he would have simply “vacated the Charlotte ordinance, thus avoiding the need for HB2,” adding “transgenders in bathrooms were not a problem.”
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Believes “our taxes are too high and our spending is not correctly prioritized … to create lasting job growth, improve roads and create excellent schools.” Former management consultant and Mayor of Cornelius. Aims to “cut taxes … eliminate wasteful spending, and prioritize support for public safety, roads, and schools.”

N.C. House District 88

Mary Belk

Party: Democrat.
Website: marybelk.org.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but said she would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Health care expansion, investing in teachers, and focusing on vocational and technical programs.

Rob Bryan

Party: Republican.
Website: www.friendsofrob.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted for it. “Will continue to seek compromise” but said Charlotte city leaders refused to work with state leaders.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Currently a lawyer at Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice with a focus on commercial real estate. Participated in Teach for America for two years after college. “Currently working with NC Teacher of the Year, James Ford, to identify the best evidence-based strategies to pay, evaluate, and retain teachers.”

N.C. House District 92

Chaz Beasley

Party: Democrat.
Website: ChazBeasley.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but said he would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Recruiting high-quality jobs while supporting small businesses, opposing I-77 toll lanes, and maintaining control of our airport. Increasing teacher pay, providing financial literacy education in school and keeping college affordable. Fighting discrimination, equal pay for women, and supporting even “uniquely-built” families.

[Read a Q&A we did with Beasley earlier this year.]

Beth Danae Caulfield

Party: Republican.
Website: www.caulfieldnchouse.com
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but said: “We cannot have laws that provide loopholes that risk anyone’s safety and especially our children. If there is a need to help some in our society feel comfortable with regards to which bathroom they use, then let’s sit down at the table and have a respectful discussion on how we may accommodate their need without disregarding the needs of the vast majority.”
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Former member of the U.S. Air Force, real estate entrepreneur, and Huntersville Town Commissioner. Seeks for further job growth by lowering corporate income taxes. Would further invest in infrastructure, specifically I-77. Opposed I-77 toll lanes. Blames the city of Charlotte for HB2. Pro life.

N.C. House District 98

John R. Bradford III

Party: Republican.
Website: www.electbradford.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted for it. Said later: “Parts have been repealed and there’s room for more compromise, but I do not support an open policy allowing men to use public restrooms … intended for use by women.”
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Former Cornelius Town Commissioner. Founder and President of Park Avenue Properties, a residential property management and real estate investment firm. He’s against I-77 toll lanes, instead suggesting adding general purpose lanes.

Jane Campbell

Party: Unaffiliated
Website: janecampbellfornchouse.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but said she would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Against HB2, wants to increase education spending, is for expanding healthcare to everyone, wants to repeal voter ID law.

N.C. House District 99

Rodney W. Moore

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.rodneywmoore.us.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted against it.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Past Vice Chairman of the Charlotte Housing Authority Board of Commissioners. “Passionate about issues that affect small and minority business, homeowner’s rights, the rights of seniors, fair access to affordable health solutions for all North Carolinians, and … educational options … that emphasizes science, technology, engineering, and math.”

N.C. House District 100

John Autry

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.johnautry.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but was behind introducing and passing the nondiscrimination ordinance in Charlotte that led to the state passing HB2.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Former City Council member, leaning on his local government experience. Seeks to raise teacher pay and school funding. Hopes to expand Medicaid in North Carolina.

N.C. House District 101

Beverly Miller Earle

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.facebook.com/representative.earle.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Absent.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Couldn’t find a website and her Facebook page has no mention of issues.

Justin Dunn

Party: Republican.
Website: votejustindunn.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: From Facebook: Increase teacher salary, expand medicaid, smart budget reform, small business tax incentives for new hires, affordable housing, criminal justice reform, and affordable community college for everyone.

N.C. House District 102

Becky Carney

Party: Democrat.
Website: n/a.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Absent.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: No website or Facebook page that mentions issues.

N.C. House District 103

Rochelle Rivas

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.rivasfornchouse.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: President of finance and accounting consulting firm. “Firmly against Rep. Brawley’s privatized toll roads initiative.” Wants to increase teacher pay. Would crack down on corporations guilty of pollution.

Bill Brawley

Party: Republican.
Website: www.nchouse103.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted for it.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Commercial real estate broker, formerly on Matthews Town Council, and Mecklenburg Parks Commission. “Representative Brawley is a tenacious defender of private property rights, limited government, and lower taxes.” Big focus on transportation. Claims “strong conservative principles”.

N.C. House District 104

Peter Noris

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.peternoris.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote but would support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Former businessman with sales experience in manufacturing. Anti-HB2, looks to expand Medicaid, increase teacher pay, reform criminal justice system “We need to reclassify and decriminalize marijuana, eliminate for-profit prisons, and revisit our state’s mandatory minimum laws.” Focus on renewable energy: “Global climate change is real.”

Andy Dulin

Party: Republican.
Website: www.voteandydulin.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but would not support repeal.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: No mention of issues on website.

N.C. House District 105

Connie Green-Johnson

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.conniegreenjohnson.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote. Said: “HB2 does not need to be repealed because it’s unconstitutional.”
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Small business owner with a history in health care. States low teacher pay and school funding cuts are hurting schools. Would expand healthcare. Against tax structure that in which “the top 1 percent got, on average, a $15,000 tax cut.” Outspoken about land and water issues, specifically Duke Energy’s relationship with Governor Pat McCrory. Critical of state’s lack of infrastructure investment.

Scott Stone

Party: Republican.
Website: www.electscottstone.com.
HB-2 (Bathroom ordinance): Wasn’t in office for vote, but said: ”Any potential modifications should coincide with actions by Charlotte City Council to change its bathroom ordinance.”
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Wasn’t in office for vote.

Issues: Background in engineering and construction. Currently President of American Engineering, a civil engineering and survey firm. Founded NC Heroes Fund, a nonprofit that raises money for military families. “Proud to cast votes which continued to lower tax rates.” Seeks to increase teacher pay. Focus on transportation.

N.C. House District 106

Carla Cunningham

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.carlacunningham2012.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted against it.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Absent.

Issues: Big proponent of equal pay regardless of gender or race. Seeks to increase funding for education. Would expand Medicaid.

N.C. House District 107

Kelly Alexander

Party: Democrat.
Website: www.votekellyalexander.com.
HB2 (Bathroom ordinance): Voted against it.
HB-972 (Law enforcement recordings are not public domain): Voted for it.

Issues: Manages Alexander Funeral Home. Hopes to “focus on supporting small businesses who are struggling with technical assistance and access to capital.” Thinks “The State should promote the lowering of water/sewer, electrical rates for consumers who reduce their consumption; provide incentives for construction and renovations that meet or exceed green building council standards, use renewable energy, recycle water, plant climate appropriate ornamental vegetation.”

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Why isn’t this front and center instead of a story about hotdogs? And your email newsletter’s top story was about the fear of clowns? Sigh.

    • Hey Michael! I definitely see your point. We made it our No. 2 story out of 5, and we usually pick our top story, at least in part, based on photo, since the photo will be the largest on the newsletter and the website.

      We obviously understand the importance of this story — that’s why we wanted to do it. And we have the ability to move stories around on the site, so you might see this as the top story at some point today.

      Thanks for reading!

  2. If you’re a representative it should be mandatory that you vote on important issues. Being absent is disrespectful to the process. How is this acceptable?

  3. There’s no such thing as the ‘Democrat Party’. Your identifier should read:

    Party: Democratic

    No point in using silly Republican insults.

  4. Rough Counts as I was just scanning through while counting but,

    I see 30 representatives above:
    8 Democrats weren’t there to vote.
    7 Republicans weren’t there to vote.
    1 Unaffiliated (the only unaffiliated) wasn’t there to vote.

    That’s more than half of the people on this page. This is insulting.

  5. Turns out I was entirely right about the Federal Government using the NSA to commit illegal domestic spying. Everyone happy that their lives have been micro-examined by unknown persons with who knows what authority?
    Apparently now in June 2017 subpoenas are finally going out to determine exactly who spied on average Americans, which is against the law.

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