The Party Line

The Party Line: Raising the Curtain on Carolina Politics, is dedicated to examining regional issues and policies through the figures who give shape to them. These are critical, complex, and even downright confusing times we live in. There’s a lot to navigate nationally and in the Carolinas; whether it’s debates on gay marriage, public school closings, or tax incentives for economic development.  The Party Line’s goal is to offer a provocative, intelligent look at the issues and players behind the action; a view that ultimately offers the necessary insight for Carolina voters to hold public servants more accountable.

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The Party Line
5:24 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

Obama Continues Presidential Legacy Of Tough Year 5

The standing line for most presidential aspirations goes, “what does every first-term president want? A second term.” However, it may be something future presidents want to reconsider.

With the past four presidents who served a second term (Reagan, Clinton, George W. Bush, and now Obama), the fifth year seems to be one that they would all rather have done without.

But there are two key differences between the presidents of the 1980s and 1990s and those who held the office in the 21st Century.

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The Party Line
4:46 pm
Mon November 11, 2013

Republicans Still Viable In Charlotte (Barely)

In looking at this year’s Charlotte mayoral election, many observers believed that the election would determine whether the city had become like other national urban areas, a Democratic dominion, or if a GOP candidate could still perform at a level of political relevanIn the end, Republican Edwin Peacock’s candidacy mirrored that of the GOP’s performance from four years ago: he lost with 47% of the vote, one point below 2009’s GOP candidate, John Lassiter, in the last open mayoral contest.

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The Party Line
12:53 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

Want To Throw The Bums Out? Well, Here's The Likely Result...

J. Michael Bitzer

As a result of the government shutdown, Americans are genuinely frustrated with the way that politicians are handling their governing system. 

In a recent Pew Research Center poll, only 14% of respondents said they were satisfied with the way things are going in the United States; a Gallup Poll found only 18% were satisfied with the way the nation was being governed. 

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The Party Line
9:44 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Unaffiliated Status Gains Appeal To Younger Black Voters

A recent article in the Charlotte Observer had the headline asking, “Voting fight: Is it race or politics?”

For intensely partisan observers, the redistricting fight is either racial or political. But, in looking deeper into the numbers nowadays, the answer is that the voting fight is much more race and politics. 

Going into the future, however, it could be ‘or’ rather than ‘and’ when it comes to racial politics in North Carolina.

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The Party Line
11:35 am
Thu October 17, 2013

GOP's Slide In Charlotte Elections Likely To Continue

J. Michael Bitzer

With Washington’s mess garnering the nation’s attention, many voters would like a chance to register their complaints against DC right now. And while they will have to wait until next spring’s primary elections and the general election a year from now, some voters will have their chance to express their votes in the coming weeks.

I say “some” voters because very few voters cast their ballots in odd-year elections, one of which is Charlotte. 

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The Party Line
4:13 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Safe Districts Embolden Bloc Of GOP House Members

J. Michael Bitzer

With the continued budgetary and debt crises consuming the country and the nation’s business, a deeper look into the warring camps may be helpful to understand their outlook and how much actual support each side may have.

Since their arrival on the political scene in 2009 and most importantly in 2010 election, the Tea Party has become the driving force within the Republican Party over the past two election cycles, especially in Congressional elections.

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The Party Line
1:14 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

How Polarized Are We? Let's Look At The Numbers...

As the game of gridlock “chicken” in Washington continues to march on, commentators are trying to explain “how did we get to this point of polarization?”

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The Party Line
10:07 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

As Charlotte Grows, GOP Precincts Get Some Blue

With the primary elections for the City of Charlotte concluded and the candidates for city offices selected, can any analysis be done in looking at the fall’s general election for the Queen City?

An analytical approach known as the “partisan voting index,” or PVI, can give us a sense of how each of the county’s 195 precincts politically “behave” in their voting patterns.

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The Party Line
4:38 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Comparing Unpopularity Of McCrory, Perdue

­­With the special legislative session to consider overriding Governor Pat McCrory’s vetoes, the final actions of this year’s “long session” of the NC General Assembly is coming to close. 

And with the dust settling from the legislative actions, it’s worth taking stock of the reaction of public opinion toward the chief executive, especially in comparison to his predecessor.

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The Party Line
1:07 pm
Fri August 23, 2013

NC's Political Shift Borne Out In Data

Michael Bitzer

North Carolina has garnered a lot of media attention in the last few weeks, and dependent upon the political and ideological persuasion of the observer, the state is either: 1., headed for the ultimate demise of Western civilization, or 2., resurrected itself and found its true political nature.

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