Paul Luebke stayed true to himself all his 25 years in the North Carolina General Assembly. Representing Durham, Democrat Luebke could be counted upon to advocate his decidedly liberal viewpoints in debate and never to ignore other views. A college professor, he always came to debates, often in the minority, well-informed and reasoned.
His voice will be missed on Jones Street. Luebke died of cancer after a recurrence of an illness he’d battled last year.
Durham constituents elected him to 11 terms. An authority on North Carolina politics who’d written some scholarly tomes on it through the years, Luebke might have been in the minority on a debate, but his foes never caught him off-guard or uninformed.
And, he understood the struggles of the less fortunate, for whom he was a strong advocate all his years in the legislature. And those people needed, and still need, such a champion.
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Speaking for them, and for the “liberal” side on issues such as education and health care, was an uphill push for the professor. But Luebke never took his shoulder off that wheel. His determination, his belief in his viewpoint, his determination to help the less fortunate even as a member of the minority party never moved in all his years in the General Assembly. Luebke’s constituents must now hope they can find another voice as powerful as his, and as righteous. For they were truly blessed for a long and distinguished time.