Under the Dome

Dome: Birthday fundraiser held for Sen. Phil Berger

From Staff ReportsAugust 12, 2013 

State Sen. Phil Berger

COREY LOWENSTEIN — clowenst@newsobserver.com Buy Photo

Dome extends belated birthday wishes to Senate leader Phil Berger. The Eden Republican turned 61 last Thursday.

Patrick Gannon of the Insider reports that to mark the occasion, Berger’s wife, Pat, sent an email to supporters asking them to help her raise at least $6,100 by the end of the day to “make sure Republicans keep control of the State Senate in 2014.”

She had some fun at her husband’s expense, Gannon said, quoting the email: “Pretty soon his birthday gifts will consist of stronger reading glasses, antibiotics and all-expense-paid trips to the geriatric ward.”

Supporters were asked to donate $6.10, $61, $610 or $1,610.

“Consider it a good deed for a senior citizen. Just don’t tell him I said that,” she wrote.

Could her note be a possible indication that Berger won’t run for the U.S. Senate? Dome won’t speculate, and Berger has yet to say whether he will challenge House Speaker Thom Tillis for the GOP nomination.

GOP brings Brewer to state

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer will be the featured guest at a GOP fundraiser at the North Ridge Country Club in Raleigh on Sept.14. All of the proceeds go to 30 candidates endorsed by the Wake County Republican Party.

Organizers expect a sellout crowd. Tickets range from $5,000 for a VIP reception and dinner with extra tickets, to $75 single tickets.

Burr and the health care law

Freedom Works, a conservative group, will hold a series of town hall meetings, protests and discussions to urge Congress to defund the Affordable Care Act.

The group plans to hold a lunch in Hendersonville Monday with Rep. Mark Meadows and a protest at the office of Sen. Richard Burr’s office in Winston-Salem.

It will also hold a town hall meeting at the Forsyth-Tech Bolton campus. The group has planned a regional meeting in Yadkinville on Tuesday as well as a town hall meeting in Greensboro.

The group is protesting Burr’s office because Burr has said he will only go so far in opposing the health care legislation.

“Defunding and repealing Obamacare is smart, and is a worthy objective,” Burr said in a recent statement. “Unfortunately, the ‘strategy’ of shutting down the government to achieve that goal is not smart, nor will it help us achieve our shared objective.

“To be clear, I believe the law is a disaster for the American people,” Burr said. “It is putting a wet blanket on job creation, squeezing more of Americans’ hard-earned take-home pay, increasing health care costs, and decreasing access to quality health care. That is exactly why I fought against passage of the bill and have repeatedly supported efforts and legislation to defund and repeal Obamacare in its entirety.”

Freedom Works originated from a conservative political group called Citizens for a Sound Economy, which was set up by businessman David Koch. The group has been involved in the tea party movement.

Nationwide, parties in disarray

Roll Call, the Capitol Hill publication, has just named the seven most dysfunctional state parties in the country and – surprise, surprise – the North Carolina Democratic Party did not make the cut.

Apparently you have to keep these things in perspective.

In Alabama, the state Democratic Party chairman bolted the party to form a new organization. The party is being threatened with eviction, is unable to pay utility bills, and is saddled with $500,000 in debt.

Before the Alaska Republican Party leaders were ousted, the party chair changed the locks on GOP headquarters.

The chairman of the Georgia Democratic Party stepped down after the state bar association temporarily suspended his law license. The Minnesota Republican Party, which posted $2 million in debt, was nearly evicted from its building.

The factional fighting among Republicans in Nevada has gotten so bad after Ron Paul supporters took over the party that the Republican National Committee unveiled a shadow party structure called “Team Nevada.”

Roll Call also included the New Jersey Democratic Party, which it said was in disarray because of the strength of Republican Gov. Chris Christie.

Staff writers Mary Cornatzer, Craig Jarvis, Rob Christensen

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