North Carolina Newspapers

    Coleman gears up for new campaign
BY CHANEL DAVIS
THE CHRONIC! P.
North Carolina resi
dents may have a sense of
deja-vu next November
when it's time to go to the
polls.
Democrat Linda
Coleman has announced
that she will face current
Lt. Governor Dan Forest
again in the 2016 race. She
said that she's excited to
run again.
"I'm running to give
North Carolinians, espe
cially the middle class, a
fighting chance. Things are
just not going well in
Raleigh. We just need a
change in Raleigh and I
believe that I'm that
change," she said.
In 2012, Coleman ran
against Forest in a tight
race, a difference of 6,858
votes out of the 4.3 million
cast, backed by the State
Employees Association of
North Carolina. The new
bie won that face becoming
the second Republican
since 1897 to be elected to
the seat.
"It was excruciating
close. A little over 6,000
votes separated us. I
believe this time 1 will have
more time to run. Last time
I got in the race late so I've
gotten out there early this
year," she said. "Hopefully
that's going to give me an
opportunity to reach out
and connect with voters
and middle class people so
we can get the message out
about what's going on in
Raleigh to educate them
and make sure they under
stand why we need the
change."
Coleman will focus on
the middle class families
during her campaign, along
with the underprivileged
and underserved. She said
that most people, usually
those who make between
$30,00 to $70,000, identify
with and say that they're in
the middle class.
"Those are the people
who are getting left behind
today. They're the people
who've had the earned
income tax taken away
from them, they're the peo
ple who've had educational
opportunities snatched
from under them, they're
the people whose salaries
are not going up while the
commodities are increasing
and these are the people
whose state income taxes
are going up.
These are the people
who are bearing the brunt
of taxing the middle class
and making sure that the
rich are profiting from it.
The rich, wealthy and big
corporations are profiting
from it while the middle
class people and the under
class are really bearing the
brunt of all of these tax
breaks," she told The
Chronicle.
The Greenville, N.C.
native earned her bachelor
of arts from N.C. A&T
State University before
earning her masters in pub
lic administration from the
Coleman
CAMPAIGN 2016
University of Pittsburgh's
Graduate School of Public
and International Affairs.
She's served on the
Wake County Board of
Commissioners for four
years and worked as
human resources manage
ment director at the state
departments of Agriculture
and Administration and as
a personnel director for the
Department of Community
Colleges. Before that she
was a teacher. That experi
ence explains why she's
passionate about providing
education for everyone.
The Lt. Governor
serves as the president of,
the state Senate, serves on
the Board of Economic
Development and is.a vot
ing member of the state
Board of Education and on
the N.C. Community
College Board.
Two of the platforms n
Coleman vows to run on is
education and the econo- (
my. "
"There is so much f
going on with education, c
Our teachers salaries are z
not going up, the General f
Assembly has pitted our e
seasoned teachers, or those
who have career status, e
against new teachers by I
increasing pay, they're t
increasing the classroom a
size, and they've cut the a
teacher budget so that (
teachers' don't have the 2
resources that they need for u
students to learn and b
achieve. Education has r
been that key that's opened d
the doors to opportunity for c
so many people and with
out it our folk just don't a
stand a fighting chance, s
Education in North r
Carolina has been that bea- r
con of light that has made 3
up a shining example in the (
South," she said. i
She emphasized that f
the economy is what has (
the power to keep people in i
the middle class or kick t
them out. i
"The jobs that have t
been recruited to North a
Carolina are minimum
wage jobs, they are not
even living wages jobs. We
have got to change the
economy around. We've
got to have an economy
that works for all people
not just for the wealthy.
We've got to make sure we >
get the earned income tax
back and the small busi
J
less tax incentive."
On her website
Coleman said that she
wants to help build a
forth Carolina that gives
ipportunity to all its citi
ens, not just the privileged
ew." She certainly has the
xperience.
In 2004, she was elect
id to the state House of
Representatives for three
erms before being
ippointed by the governor
is the Director of the
)fftce of State Personnel in
!009. She held the position
intil 2012. Coleman
lelieves that the current
ninimum wage is not
lesigned for one to live off
>f.
"Minimum wage jobs
ire $7.25 an hour. For
omeone to be able to
nake a living wage, they
leed to be making between
H2-14 an hour.
Tommodities have gone
ip. Having been the state
>ersonnel director in the
Gov.) Bev Perdue admin
stration, I can tell you that
here are people who make
inder $30,000 a year who
>arely make ends meet,
ind really can not make
L I***
ends meet on that wage,"
she said. "There are literal
ly thousands of people
working two or three jobs
to put food on the table,
keep a roof over their fam
ilies head and clothes on
their children's back. If we
want to promote families
^e have to make sure that
parents can spend time
with their children without
being at that second and
third shift job."
She applies that dedica
tion to fair and equal pay
for women, saying that the
current General Assembly
won't recognize it as an
issue that impacts North
Carolina families.
"We've got to recog
nize that when you help
women, you help families
because whatever is good
for women is good for fam
ilies. This is the kind of
thing that would promote
the family structure and
that vye all know would
create a better quality of
life and help our state," she
said.
To join the campaign or
to donate, visit
www.lindafornc .com.
The Chronicle (USPS 067-910) was established by Ernest
H. Pitt and Ndubisi Egemonye in 1974 and is published
every Thursday by Winston-Salem Chronicle Publishing
Co. Inc., 617 N. Liberty Street, Winston-Salem, N.C.
27101. Periodicals postage paid at Winston-Salem, N.C.
Annual subscription price is $30.72.
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to:
The Chronicle, P.O. Box 1636
Winston-Salem, NC 27102-1636
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