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Archive for November 5th, 2010

Renee Ellmers: Sarah Palin Helping Raise Money For Recount Fund

On NewsRadio 680 WPTF’s Rick and Donna Martinez show this morning, Renee Ellmers told Rick and me that her team has been in contact with Sarah Palin’s team over the past 72 hours and that Palin is helping raise money for the Ellmers recount fund. Ellmers currently leads Democratic incumbent Bob Etheridge by roughly 1,600 votes.

You can listen or download the Ellmers interview here. It begins at 49:50 on the clock. The Palin question and answer occurs at 65:50 on the clock.

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NC State Official Calls for Moratorium on Speech in Free Expression Tunnel

Heaven help us. The NC State Technician reports that Thomas Stafford, the vice chancellor for student affairs at NC State, has called for a week-long moratorium on speech in the Free Expression Tunnel. (emphasis is mine)

“I think the University should shut down all of the traffic through the tunnel for a week,” said Gayden. “There should be a sign that simply says ‘appreciate.’ Maybe then people would understand.”

However, since the Free Expression Tunnel is one of the only handicap accessible tunnels on campus, Stafford said that is not a plausible solution.

Instead, Stafford said a more appropriate alternative would be to prohibit all painting of the tunnel for a week.

What I think we can look at is doing a moratorium on speech to where for a week we say there is not painting allowed,” said Stafford. “But to plan something like that, we would need to get all of the right people, the right organizations, involved.”

Ah yes, the “right” people and the “right” organizations. Scary, since that means there are “wrong” people and “wrong” organizations.

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Your Tax Dollars at Work: $20 Million For Signs

Carolina Journal Managing Editor Rick Henderson and I talked recently about his reporting on the federal cash being spent on signs to identify and promote projects funded by the stimulus package. You can read about at www.carolinajournal.com. Here’s a sample (emphasis is mine):

Martinez: Now to be fair, I think it’s reasonable to have a sign posted to let people know what is going on when they see a big construction site. I don’t have a problem with that, but it seems pretty amazing about actually how much is being spent on some of these signs. Incredible amounts of money — are they gold-plated or something?

Henderson: Well, they’re very, very fancy. And, in fact, the story that I did for Carolina Journal, I actually went down, I was driving to Wilmington to an event, and I remembered seeing this sign, so I went and took a photograph of it because I’d actually seen some reporting about the concerns about the cost of these things. It’s a very fancy sign. I gotta tell you, it’s really nice. Virginia Foxx, who is the 5th District representative, her office says that they’ve found the average cost of the majority of the signs up in North Carolina is about $2,500 a piece. Now you can compare that. In Tennessee, for instance, they use signs that look like speed-limit signs, and they cost about $40.

Martinez: So it can be done for $40, but we’re spending more?

Henderson: You could do this for less. The biggest one of all — this is something ABC News pointed out — was one that’s near Washington Dulles International Airport. This sign cost $10,000.

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