The Campaign Trail: A look at what happened this week in local politics

The candidates running for congress in the 11th District were busy this week, facing off in their first debate of the campaign Sept. 12 in Brevard.

The night was “full of zingers as Republican Mark Meadows’ small government platform collided with Democrat Hayden Rogers’ more moderate stance,” according to the Asheville Citizen-Times. Entitlement spending, education and taxes were all major points of contention, the daily paper reported. AC-T columnist Jon Ostendorff later declared that Rogers “won the match with a folksy, yet smart, style that drew out some of the flaws in Meadows small-government platform with a sense of humor mountain voters could appreciate.”

But Meadows beat Rogers to the punch in terms of television advertising, launching the first ad of the campaign earlier that day on WLOS. In the ad Meadows slams President Obama and touts his own economic plans. Watch the ad via YouTube on Ostendorff’s blog.

The next day, the candidates squared off again at a Macon County League of Women Voters forum. Watch video of the event via YouTube and the Thunder Pig blog here.

Meanwhile, in the 10 District, which includes most of Asheville, the campaigns of Republican incumbent Rep. Patrick McHenry and Democrat challenger Patsy Keever exchanged a volley of statements and press releases.

McHenry touted the endorsement of the National Right to Life Committee and received the “Guardian of Small Business Award” from the National Federation of Independent Businesses. Keever partnered with Blue America to raise funds, touted an AlterNet article proclaiming that she had a chance for an upset victory, and spoke to a teachers group, slamming McHenry over education funding.

The two also confirmed that they’ll debate for the first time Oct. 9 at a WLOS candidate forum in Asheville.

General Assembly candidates tout endorsements; Early voting details announced

In local races for seats in the North Carolina General Assembly, Buncombe County Democrats Susan Fisher, Susan Wilson, Martin Nesbitt and Jane Whilden nabbed endorsements from the N.C. League of Conservation Voters and the Equality Action Fund.

Meanwhile, Whilden’s opponent in Statehouse District 116, Republican incumbent Rep. Tim Moffitt, received the endorsement of the National Federation of Independent Businesses. And the state Republican Party sent out a mailer to some district residents promoting the Arden businessman’s support of stricter voter ID rules and tax cuts.

Election day isn’t until Nov. 6. But Buncombe County announced this week that early voting will be available starting October 18 at various locations.

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About Jake Frankel
Jake Frankel is an award-winning journalist who enjoys covering a wide range of topics, from politics and government to business, education and entertainment.

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