For Governor:Walter Dalton
We endorse the gubernatorial candidacy of Walter Dalton, the Democratic lieutenant governor, for several reasons.
Not the least of them is that we believe this longtime former legislator and attorney from the foothills town of Rutherfordton has the values and political experience that the office calls for.
Putting Dalton in the executive mansion would also help preserve the balance that state government has needed ever since Republicans captured both houses of the General Assembly in 2010 and proceeded to take rash and sometimes radical actions that have not served North Carolina well.
Republican Pat McCrory, by contrast, has given every indication that he would be in favor of more of the same kinds of things the legislature has rammed through - spending cuts that gutted early-childhood programs, forced school systems to eliminate much-needed teacher positions, and put the state's proud university system on a starvation diet at a moment in history when education is more important than ever to improve America's standing in the world.
Where McCrory has pinned unrealistic expectations on increased energy exploration as a key to economic recovery, Dalton has taken a more measured stance - especially as regards the dubious "fracking" craze, which has northern Moore County in its sights.
"The one thing no one has focused enough on in the fracking debate," Dalton said in an interview with The Pilot's editorial board, "is the supply of water. Fracking takes a lot of water." Indeed it does - a fact especially relevant to water-short Moore.
Dalton grew up in a textile town and has seen how devastated such localities have been in the past couple of decades. He knows that most of those jobs are not coming back from overseas even after things improve, and he would focus instead on high-growth industries like biotech - which require more, not less, emphasis on higher education.
The last thing we need in the governor's job is someone who would rubber-stamp the excesses of the legislature. We need someone to provide a rational power balance, and that someone is Walter Dalton.
Lieutenant Governor: The Pilot endorses Linda Coleman, a mainstream Democrat with solid experience on the Wake County Board of Commissioners, in the legislature and in the state government's executive branch.
A strong supporter of education, Coleman provides a sensible alternative to Republican Dan Forrest, who seems less concerned with the everyday issues facing North Carolinians than with tea party causes like supposed U.N. takeover threats and a mythical effort to put North Carolina under Shariah law.
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