by Rick Henderson
Editor-in-Chief, Carolina Journal
• The eight contenders for positions on the N.C. Supreme Court will appear Wednesday evening at a forum sponsored by the Triangle Lawyers chapter of the Federalist Society. Donna Martinez, co-host of Carolina Journal Radio and WPTF news anchor, will moderate the event.
• The Oct. 21 U.S. Senate debate sponsored by Time Warner Cable News and McClatchy Newspapers might have an unbalanced stage. Republican House Speaker Thom Tillis will be there, but incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan says she will not. Libertarian Sean Haugh’s participation will depend on whether he scores an average 15 percent support in the polls, and he’s been in the high single-digits at best. For now, the debate is still on.
• In National Journal, political prognosticator Charlie Cook still gives Republicans a 60 percent chance of winning the six net seats needed to take partisan control of the Senate. But if they don’t, Cook says follow the money. Democrats and their allies have opened their wallets defending their incumbents in a way that supporters of Republican and conservative challengers have not. He mentions the Hagan-Tillis race as an example.
• It’s not just the Senate race. Independent expenditure groups aligned with Democratic and liberal causes plan to drop hundreds of thousands of dollars on ads attacking Republican legislative candidates. N.C. Families First, which until recently was known as N.C. Citizens for Progress, has reserved $600,000 for ad buys in the Triangle and Fayetteville markets for the final month of the campaign.
• Republican former state legislator John Rhodes, who’s mounting a write-in campaign for the U.S. Senate, will speak Wednesday at Forsyth Tech.