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2014 EQUALITY NC ACTION FUND VOTER GUIDE

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ENDORSEMENT QUICK LINKS:
FEDERAL RACES | JUDICIAL RACES | STATE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES | STATE SENATE

Equality NC is proud to announce recommendations for 2014 federal races. Equality NC Action Fund, Equality NC's political action committee (PAC), is proud to announce state endorsements for the 2014 general election. We evaluated candidates using multiple factors, including responses to an LGBT issue-based questionnaire, candidate interviews, public position statements, and past voting records.

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U.S. Senate

Kay Hagan | U.S. Senate

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Incumbent Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) is a Congressional advocate for LGBT North Carolinians. During her five years in office, this North Carolina native has been a strong proponent of fairness and equality, co-sponsoring the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), federal legislation that would prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as voting for hate crimes protections and the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." A public supporter of marriage equality, Hagan faces a tight race with Republican challenger Thom Tillis, the Speaker of the N.C. House who helped lead his chamber to put Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, on the ballot in 2011. We need a leader like Sen. Hagan back in Washington watching out for all of us. | Senate Website | Campaign Website | Follow @SenatorHagan

U.S. House

Clay Aiken | U.S. House | Second Congressional District

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(NC's 2nd Congressional District includes all or parts of Alamance, Chatham, Cumberland, Harnett, Hoke, Lee, Moore, and Wake counties) While Clay Aiken may be best-known for a meteoric rise to fame following his 2003 stint on American Idol, the eighth-generation North Carolinian has also been a leading voice for equality for all North Carolinians, speaking on Capitol Hill in 2010 against anti-gay bullying, and, in 2012, becoming a public face against Amendment One, North Carolina's constitutional ban on the freedom to marry. In addition to his full support for marriage equality, Aiken has pledged to fight for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), and expanding hate crime laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity. He faces a close race against Republican incumbent Renee Ellmers who opposes marriage equality and has supported bills to limit the religious freedom of military chaplains to officiate same-sex marriages and has endorsed efforts to defend the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act." If elected, Aiken would become North Carolina's first openly-gay congressperson. | Campaign Website | Follow @ClayForNC

Marshall R. Adame | U.S. House | Third Congressional District

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(NC's 3rd Congressional District covers the Outer Banks and the counties adjacent to the Pamlico Sound) The son of a migrant worker, Marshall Adame came to North Carolina as a young U.S. Marine in 1976. Today, the Vietnam Veteran who served 23 years in Marine Corps, as well as a U.S. Department of State diplomatic Official in Iraq and later a member of the U.S. Congressional Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq, is a vocal proponent for human rights and equality. A supporter of the freedom to marry, Adame has said, "I personally do believe that it is your constitutional right to marry whichever human being you choose to marry and it is incumbent upon every American to respect that right." | Campaign Website | Follow @Adame4Congress

David Price | U.S. House | Fourth Congressional District

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(NC's 4th Congressional District stretches from Burlington to Fayetteville, and includes portions of, among other cities, Raleigh, Durham, and all of Chapel Hill) A more than 20-year veteran of the U.S. House, David Price has consistently worked in Congress to promote fairness for all North Carolinians. In addition to vocal support for the freedom to marry, this 11-term equality champion has a long record of co-sponsoring key LGBT legislation and protections, including the repeal of the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act," the Student Non-Discrimination Act, the Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act, and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), among many others. | House Website | Campaign Website | Follow @DPrice4Congress

Josh Brannon | U.S. House | Fifth Congressional District

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(NC's 5th Congressional District covers the northwestern corner of the state from the Appalachian Mountains to the Piedmont Triad, including portions of Winston-Salem) Josh Brannon, a 37-year-old software developer from Watauga County, faces anti-LGBT Republican incumbent Virginia Foxx for a seat in Congress representing northwestern North Carolina. Brannon is a passionate proponent for equal rights and opportunities, supporting the freedom to marry, employment non-discrimination, safe schools, and hate crimes legislation. | Campaign Website | Follow @JoshForUSHouse

Laura Fjeld | U.S. House | Sixth Congressional District

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(NC's 6th congressional district is located in north central portion of the state and borders Virginia, including all or portions of ten counties in the northern-central part of the state, including portions of Greensboro and Durham) A former UNC vice president and general counsel from Hurdle Mills, Laura Fjeld of Hillsborough is a pro-equality candidate who supports marriage equality, employment non-discrimination, and safer schools. Following Republican Phil Berger, Jr.'s runoff loss, Fjeld will face Mark Walker, an untested and socially-conservative baptist preacher, as her opponent in the seat vacated by long-time Republican Congressman Howard Coble. | Campaign Website | Follow @laurafornc

Tate MacQueen | U.S. House | 10th Congressional District

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(NC's 10th Congressional District is located in the southern portion of the state and includes Rutherford, Burke, Cleveland, Lincoln, Gaston, Catawba, Iredell, Caldwell, Avery and Mitchell counties) A dedicated teacher and coach who has been a leading figure in the struggle to address contaminated groundwater in Asheville, Tate McQueen is now taking his passion for justice to the race to represent the 10th Congressional District of North Carolina. MacQueen is an outspoken supporter of marriage equality ("To deny same-sex couples the legal protections and privileges conveyed through a marriage is a violation of their civil rights."), employment non-discrimination legislation, and the Equality Rights Amendment. | Campaign Website | Follow @TateMacQueenNC

Alma Adams | U.S. House | 12th Congressional District

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(NC's 12th congressional district is located in central North Carolina and comprises portions of Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Lexington, Salisbury, Concord, and High Point) During her fight against Amendment One from the floor of the General Assembly, then State Rep. Alma Adams (D-Guilford County) made one of the more memorable arguments against the constitutional rewrite that banned relationship recognitions for gay and lesbian couples, saying, "I continue to support and believe in marriage...I believe in it so much, I did it twice....each time with the opposite sex, but that was my choice. I've always voted against any legislation that discriminates...and this bill clearly does that." Now, the state legislative champion for marriage equality seeks a new, two-year Congressional term starting next year in the seat vacated by long-time U.S. Rep. Mel Watt. She faces socially-conservative radio host Vince Coakley of Charlotte. | Campaign Website | Follow @almaforcongress

Brenda Cleary | U.S. House | 13th Congressional District

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(NC's 13th Congressional District includes portions of Durham, Edgecombe, Franklin, Nash, Vance, Wayne, and Wilson counties) A proud 20-year North Carolinian who has had a distinguished career as a registered nurse, Brenda Cleary is a proven advocate for social justice and policies expanding health care for all. The former Republican with a strong history of service is a pro-equality candidate who supports marriage equality, passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), and expanded health care options for LGBT North Carolinians. The Indiana transplant faces socially-conservative Republican George Holding, who replaced long-time U.S. Rep. Brad Miller in 2013. | Campaign Website | Follow @Cleary4Congress

N.C. Supreme Court

Cheri Beasley | Associate Justice (Beasley Seat)

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Incumbent Cheri Beasley is an associate justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. She was appointed by Gov. Bev Perdue in 2012, to replace retiring Justice Patricia Timmons-Goodson. When Beasley was elected to the N.C. Court of Appeals in 2008, she became the first black woman to be elected to any statewide office in North Carolina without being first appointed by a governor. Beasley was a public defender in Cumberland County for five years before becoming a district court judge in 1999. Her lengthy career has enabled her to rule in appeals court cases that have helped define North Carolina law. Those appellate rulings included such issues as upholding a woman’s adoption of her same-sex partner’s child. The fair and seasoned Beasley is running for re-election against attorney Michael Robinson. | Campaign Website | Follow JusticeCBeasley

Sam Ervin IV | Associate Justice (Martin Seat)

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A native North Carolinian with a storied family legcacy of public service (as the grandson of U.S. Sen. Sam Ervin and the son of Judge Sam Ervin, III), Samuel James "Jimmy" Ervin IV is a prolific North Carolina lawyer and seasoned judge who sits on the North Carolina Court of Appeals. He served as a state Utilities Commissioner before being elected to the court in 2008. As a member of the Court of Appeals, Judge Ervin has developed a reputation for thoughtful legal decision making.  His opinions are perceived to be balanced, thorough and carefully researched. Since joining the court, he has written more than 475 opinions and has helped decide more than 1,400 cases. This fair-minded and experienced jurist faces incumbent Robert N. Hunter for the seat being vacated by Justice Mark Martin. | Campaign Website | Follow @Ervin4Supreme

Robin Hudson | Associate Justice (Hudson Seat)

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Throughout her 37 years of legal experience, incumbent Justice Robin Hudson's focus has been on fairness and on understanding real people and real families. In 2000, she became the first woman to be elected to the North Carolina Court of Appeals without having been previously appointed. She is the only member of the Court who spent nearly 25 years practicing law before serving on the bench, including handling trials and numerous appeals in a wide variety of cases, representing people all across the state. In addition to Equality NC's endorsement, Justice Hudson has received the endorsement of two Triangle leaders in the fight against Amendment One, the Durham People's Alliance and the Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People. | Campaign Website | Follow @hudsonsc6

N.C. Court of Appeals

John Arrowood | Judge (Vacant Seat)

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Former state appeals court Judge John Arrowood is running to return to the bench, following the departure of Chief Judge John Martin. Arrowood previously served on the Court of Appeals from 2007 to 2008, appointed to the position by Gov. Mike Easley to fill a vacancy. During his tenure, Arrowood authored opinions, concurrences or dissents in over 100 cases and was the first LGBT North Carolinian to serve on the Court of Appeals. Prior to his Court of Appeals service, Arrowood served as a Special Superior Court Judge. Earlier, he clerked for Court of Appeals Judge Gerald Arnold and served as a staff attorney and head of the court’s central staff. Arrowood has been in private practice with the firm of James, McElroy and Diehl, PA in Charlotte, primarily in the areas of employment and commercial litigation. If elected, Arrowood would become the first openly-LGBT statewide elected in the South.

Mark Davis | Judge (Davis Seat)

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Judge Mark A. Davis is running for a full N.C. Court of Appeals term (he is currently serving out the remainder of the term of Cheri Beasley, who vacated the seat when she was appointed to the Supreme Court). Judge Davis spent five years as a Special Deputy Attorney General in the North Carolina Department of Justice. Prior to that, he worked for thirteen years as a litigation attorney with the Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice law firm, where he was a member of the firm. Judge Davis also served as General Counsel in the Office of the Governor. The North Carolina native pledges fairness for and a willingness to "protect the quality of life for all North Carolinians." | Campaign Website

Lucy Inman | Judge (Hunter Seat)

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Judge Lucy Inman faces Bill Southern for the seat held by departing Judge Robert C. Hunter. Judge Inman is a Special Superior Court Judge and was appointed to that position in 2010 by former Governor Beverly Perdue. Prior to that, she was a trial lawyer. The Raleigh native has built a strong record of fairness, hard work, and respect for all citizens who enter the courtrooms across our state where she presides.| Campaign Website | Follow @JudgeLucyInman

State House of Representatives

Bobbie Richardson | District 7

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(Incumbent, Representing Franklin and Nash counties)
Appointed in 2013 to take over the seat formerly held by Angela Bryant, Democratic Rep. Bobbie Richardson reveals strong support for the freedom to marry, employment non-discrimination legislation, ensuring much-needed protections for gay and transgender workers, and providing safer schools for all North Carolina children. While she's running unopposed, Richardson is considered an important friend to LGBT North Carolinians in the eastern part of the state. | NCGA Page | Follow @NCRepRichardson

Bobi Gregory | District 8

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(Challenger, Pitt and Wilson counties)
Bobi Gregory is the 2014 Democratic candidate for District 8 of the North Carolina House of Representatives. A pro-equality pick from Wilson, she faces incumbent Republican Susan Martin in November. A retired teacher, Gregory supports the freedom to marry, providing workplace protections, and ensuring that taxpayer-funded schools are safe places for all North Carolina students. | Campaign Website | Follow @BobiforNC

Uriah Ward | District 9

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(Challenger, Pitt County)
Don't let Democrat Uriah Ward's age fool you. The East Carolina senior, taking on Republican incumbent Brian Brown, is a seasoned community activist who helped lead the fight against Amendment One from his home base in Pitt County. In addition to being a proven champion for the cause of marriage equality, Ward has pledged to be a strong voice for hate crime legislation, protections for gay and transgender students, and workplace policies to finally protect North Carolina's many vulnerable LGBT state employees and teachers. | Campaign Website | Follow @uriahward

Duane Hall | District 11

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
Duane Hall is a Democratic member of the North Carolina House of Representatives, representing District 11. He was first elected to the chamber in 2012, and currently serves as the Democratic Conference Co-Chair. A strong advocate for voting rights for all, he's also a pro-equality voice in Wake County, supporting the freedom to marry, workplace protections for gay and transgender workers, and safer schools for all North Carolina kids. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @RepDuaneHall

George Graham | District 12

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(Incumbent, Representing Craven, Greene and Lenior counties)
 Democratic incumbent State Representative George Graham supports the freedom to marry in North Carolina, non-discrimination for gay and transgender employees in public and private employment, hate crime expansion, second-parent adoption for same-sex couples, and extending protections for gay and transgender kids in taxpayer-funded schools. Graham is running unopposed this fall but remains an important voice for equality in Eastern North Carolina. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website |

Steve Unger | District 16

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(Challenger, Onslow and Pender counties) 
Steve Unger is a 2014 Democratic candidate for District 16 of the North Carolina House of Representatives, facing Republican incumbent Chris Millis. Unger, a long-time newspaperman and public servant from Hamstead, reveals his public support for equality on his campaign website, writing "As your representative, I pledge to fight discrimination in all forms— whether based on race, sex, ethnicity, national origin, language, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or disability." Unger also shows strong support for marriage equality, workplace protections, and safer schools for LGBT youth. | Campaign Website | Follow @sunger4nchouse

Charles Warren | District 17

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(Challenger, Brunswick County)
Charles Warren is the Democratic candidate for the District 17 seat of the North Carolina House of Representatives, encompassing most of Brunswick County. He faces Republican incumbent Frank Iler who was first appointed to the chamber in 2009. Warren, a former Brunswick County Commissioner who served as a Republican, revealed support for the freedom to marry, as well as employment and school protects for gay and transgender North Carolininas at the recent launch of Equality NC's eastern affiliate, and would be an important friend to equality from the eastern part of the state. | Campaign Website | Follow @Warren4NC

Susi Hamilton | District 18

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(Incumbent, Representing New Hanover County)
State Rep. Susi Hamilton represents House District 18, which includes parts of New Hanover County. During the Amendment One fight, this Wilmington businesswoman, now seeking her third term in the State House, could often be found at an anti-Amendment One rally or forum, calling the constitutional rewrite "divisive and discriminatory." While she's running unopposed, Hamilton is a strong supporter of workplace protections for LGBT North Carolinans, as well as laws that protect gay and transgender kids, a legislative focus in 2015. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @RepSusiHamilton

Betsy Jordan | District 20

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(Challenger, New Hanover County)
Betsy Jordan is the 2014 Democratic candidate for for District 20 of the N.C. House. Jordan has been an outspoken advocate for equality for LGBT North Carolinians, including vocal support for the freedom to marry, protections for gay and transgender workers, expanding hate crime legislation, and making sure protections are in place for LGBT kids attending taxpayer-funded schools. The Wilmington businesswoman faces Republican incumbent Rick Catlin. | Campaign Website | Follow @VoteBetsyJordan

Shelly Willingham | District 23

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(Edgecombe and Martin Counties)
Shelly Willingham is the Democratic candidate for District 23 of the North Carolina House of Representatives. Willingham served two terms on the Edgecombe County Board of Elections. He garnered a perfect score on the Equality NC questionnaire, revealing strong support for marriage equality, banning employment discrimination against gay or transgender workers, second-parent adoption and anti-bullying laws impacting our state's youngest LGBT citizens. | Campaign Website

Larry Hall | District 29

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(Incumbent, Representing Durham County)
Rep. Larry Hall, a five-term incumbent from Durham County and Equality NC's 2012 "Legislative Equality Champion," was one of the most vocal and valuable opponents of North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry. Hall joined fellow representatives from the North Carolina General Assembly and the NAACP to speak at countless press conferences, rallies, forums (and even the 2011 Equality Conference) about the harms of this discriminatory rewrite, calling it "the wrong way to go." While Hall runs unopposed, the Democratic Leader of the N.C. House is also a vital ally in the fight for employment non-discrimination protections for gay and transgender workers. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @rephall_durham

Paul Luebke | District 30

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(Incumbent, Representing Durham County)
Rep. Paul Luebke is considered a strong ally for equality, and with good reason: he not only voted against Amendment One, but openly scolded anti-LGBT lawmakers for not allowing any public debate, telling all who would hear it from the floor, "this is just wrong." The self-professed Progressive Democrat supports LGBT rights and firmly believes sexual orientation and gender identity should be included in the state's anti-discrimination law, and actively worked to include sexual orientation and gender identity in North Carolina's historic anti-bullying legislation (School Violence Prevention Act) that passed the General Assembly in 2009. | NCGA Page

Mickey Michaux | District 31

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(Incumbent, Representing Durham County)
Eighteen-term Rep. Mickey Michaux has continually stood up as a strong ally for equality. In 2011, we saw his storied opposition to Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, from the floor of the General Assembly and beyond as this champion of equality quoted the Constitution's "right to the pursuit of happiness," and reaffirmed it was for "everyone." He also showed his unabashed support for equality just this year, demanding from the floor of the General Assembly that legislators include protections for gay and transgender students in charter school legislations. Michaux is an ally for the ages. | NCGA Page

Rosa Gill | District 33

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
A strong advocate for families and marginalized communities, three-term Rep. Rosa Gill, a retired teacher who served on the Wake County Board of Education for 10 years, encouraged strong voter participation against Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, during the 2012 primary election. She faces Republican Perry Whitlock in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @Rep_Rosa_Gill 

Grier Martin | District 34

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
Five-term Rep. Grier Martin was appointed in 2013 to take the seat of departing fellow Democrat Deborah Ross. Not only was Martin a staunch opponent to Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, but also made very public his support for marriage equality in 2014, acknowledging that no reasonable legal defense of the "misguided 'Amendment One' remains" following the 4th Circuit ruling, saying "after all, everyone deserves the right to make the personal decision to love — and have the same freedoms and protections as their neighbors, friends, and family." Rep. Martin, a veteran of the war in Afghanistan, will also be a strong and unwavering ally in efforts to pass employment protections for gay and transgender workers, as well as upcoming efforts to protect LGBT kids in taxpayer-funded schools. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @GrierMartin

Lisa Baker | District 36

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(Challenger, Wake County)
Democratic challenger Lisa Baker is taking on five-term incumbent Republican legislator Nelson Dollar in the competitive race for the District 36 N.C. House seat. A life-long resident of North Carolina, Baker is a small business owner who believes strongly in LGBT equality, supporting the freedom to marry, workplace protections, and safer schools for all North Carolina kids. Her pro-equality voice would make a welcome addition to the N.C. House this fall. | Campaign Website

Yvonne Holley | District 38

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
As the incumbent candidate for her District 38 seat of the N.C. House, Yvonne Holley is a pro-equality leader dedicated to righting the wrongs of the current conservative legislative majority. As she told the Raleigh Public Record on Amendment One, "I think that [the General Assembly has] spent so much time promoting a political agenda... I think that’s part of what the marriage amendment is. They’re spending time doing that kind of thing as opposed to really looking at how they can help people in the district during a hard time." Holley supports the freedom to marry and protections for gay and transgender workers and students. She faces Republican challenger Joe Thompson in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @YvonneLHolley

Darren Jackson | District 39

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
Three-term incumbent Darren Jackson serves Wake County and in 2012 voted with his county against Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, telling the Independent Weekly, "It is my belief that freedom means freedom for everyone. If you can't be free to make the most personal decisions about who to dedicate your life to, what are you free to decide?" The Raleigh attorney is also a strong supporter of workplace protections for gay and transgender North Carolinians, as well as safe and discrimination-free schools for LGBT youth. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @RepDarrenJ

Margaret Broadwell | District 40

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(Challenger, Wake County)
Former Morrisville Town Councilwoman Margaret Broadwell has filed for the N.C. House District 40 seat that represents parts of Morrisville, Wake Forest, and Raleigh. Broadwell, a Democrat, faces off against four-term, pro-Amendment One Republican incumbent Marilyn Avila. A small business owner, Broadwell supports the freedom to marry in North Carolina, non-discrimination for gay and transgender employees in public and private employment, hate crime expansion, second-parent adoption for same-sex couples, and extending protections for gay and transgender kids in taxpayer-funded schools, among other pro-equality measures. Broadwell would be a welcome representative from Wake County. | Campaign Website | Follow @Broadwell4House

Gale Adcock | District 41

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(Challenger, Wake County)
As mayor pro tem and a member of the Cary Town Council since 2007, pro-equality challenger Gale Adcock is taking on two-term Republican Incumbent Tom Murry in an incredibly tight race for the N.C House's District 41 seat. While Murry voted for Amendment One, Adcock by contrast is a supporter of the freedom to marry, and will fight for protections for gay and transgender workers, as well as safer schools for LGBT kids. | Campaign Website | Follow @galeadcock

Marvin Lucas | District 42

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(Incumbent, Representing Cumberland County) A true and long-time advocate for equality, this seven-term, retired principal representing Cumberland County voted against Amendment One and supported the historic School Violence Prevention Act providing protections from bullying for children based on sexual orientation and gender identity. He runs unopposed, but is an essential and vocal voice for equality in the Sandhills region. | NCGA Page

Rick Glazier | District 44

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(Incumbent, Representing Cumberland County)
One of the most vocal opponents of Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, was Rep. Rick Glazier, who from the floor of the General Assembly told his fellow legislators that they sought to amend the constitution "not on the merits, but because of our fear." Following its passage, he opened the press conference introducing the campaign to defeat Amendment One with a stirring 11-minute speech in support of equality, and participated in numerous rallies, debates and public forums with the goal of stopping the discriminatory rewrite. Most recently, he stood with fellow advocates of equality on the floor of the N.C. House, to stand up for gay and transgender children in charter schools. Glazier is an invaluable pro-equality leader in the NCGA who faces Repubican Richard Button in the fall.  | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow him at @RickGlazier

Kimberly Hanchette | District 49

Kim Hanchette

(Challenger, Northwestern Wake County)
We first met Kim Hanchette during the campaign against Amendment One, when she led Trust Women NC's important efforts to stop the ban on marriage equality in North Carolina. Since then, Hanchette has remained a visible and vocal advocate for equality on all fronts, including income equality, as well as the fight for better teacher pay and improved health care for all. In addition to Equality NC's endorsement, this CEO of the Diabetes Bus Initiative, a project helping rural North Carolinians treat the disease, has been endorsed by five Wake County Democrats in the General Assembly. She faces Republican Gary Pendleton in a close race this fall. | Campaign Website | Follow @KimHanchette49

Graig Meyer | District 50

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(Incumbent, Representing Orange and Chatham counties)
Rep. Graig Meyer, appointed in 2013, is a pro-equality leader who vocally supports the freedom to marry in North Carolina. It says so right on his website: "Because I want to live in an inclusive North Carolina, I believe LGBTQ citizens deserve equal rights under the law. These include the opportunity to marry a partner of their choosing, to exercise standard domestic and legal rights, and to be free from discrimination at home and in the workplace.The recently passed constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman writes discrimination into our state’s Constitution. I will fight to repeal the amendment and create a legal way for same-sex couples to marry. All North Carolinians deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, without exception." He also supports workplace protections for LGBT North Carolinians and will fight for safer schools for gay and transgender kids. He faces a competitive race against Republican challenger Rod Chaney in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @GraigMeyer

Robert Reives | District 54

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(Incumbent, Representing Chatham and Lee counties)
Rep. Robert T. Reives, II was appointed in 2014 to replace Deb McManus in the District 54 seat of the N.C. House. Reives, a Sanford attorney, received a perfect score on the Equality NC questionnaire, not only supporting the freedom to marry, but also showing a willingness to co-sponsor legislation that ensures workplace protections for gay and transgender workers, second-parent adoption rights for our families, and safer schools for LGBT kids, among other pro-equality bills. Reives faces Republican challenger Andy Wilkie in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website

Kim Hargett | District 55

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(Challenger, Anson and Union counties)
Anson County native Kim Hargett takes on incumbent Republican Rep. Mark Brody for the N.C House seat in District 55 this fall. A Democratic educator with a strong commitment to public education, Hargett is also a supporter of the freedom to marry, workplace protection policies for North Carolina's LGBT state employees and teachers, as well as protections for gay and transgender students in taxpayer-funded schools. She hopes to unseat her one-term opponent, and provide a much-needed voice for equality from her region. | Campaign Website | Follow @KimHargettForNC

Verla Insko | District 56

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(Incumbent, Representing Orange County)
During her nearly two decades in the N.C. House, Democratic incumbent Rep. Verla Insko has been a strong pro-equality leader, co-sponsoring the historic School Violence Prevention Act to protect gay and transgender youth and fighting against Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry. On Amendment One, she noted from the House floor the many gay couples in her church, saying "God accepts them the way they are. Why can't we?" She faces Republican challenger David Pratt Carter this fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @verlainsko

Pricey Harrison | District 57

Pricey Harrison

(Incumbent, Representing Guilford County)
Five-term Rep. Pricey Harrison is an unwavering and vocal advocate for LGBT equality. From the House floor, Harrison famously spoke of how Amendment One would impact her own family, tearing up as she talked about her lesbian sister: "What kind of signal are we sending her?" Rep. Harrison is also a proud supporter of workplace protections for gay and transgender workers and actively worked to protect students from bullying on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. | NCGA Profile | Campaign Website | Follow @priceyharrison

Cecil Brockman | District 60

Cecil Brockman

(Guilford County)
Cecil Brockman is seeking the seat currently held by the General Assembly's only openly-gay representative, Marcus Brandon, who won in 2010 but will not seek re-election, vying instead to run for the U.S. House seat left vacant by Mel Watt’s appointment as director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Brandon, a long-time friend of Equality NC, has already issued a strong endorsement for his former legislative aide, Brockman, who scored perfect marks on the Equality NC candidate survey on issues like marriage equality, non-discrimination, and anti-bullying, saying "I can’t think of anyone better or more qualified than Cecil Brockman, and he has my full support.” | Campaign Website | Follow @CecilBrockman

Sal Leone | District 62

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(Challenger, Guilford County)
Sal Leone is the 2014 Democratic candidate for District 62 of the N.C. House and who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary. He faces Republican incumbent John Blust was first elected to the chamber in 2000. Leone, a police officer with a passion for animal rights and equal treatment of marginalized communities, is very public about his support for the LGBT community in North Carolina, saying "We must respect [LGBT] rights by giving them rights we as American all have. The LGBT community is not a second class citizen but citizens like all of us."

Ian Baltutis | District 63

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(Challenger, Alamance County)
Ian Baltutis is the N.C. House candidate from District 63, which covers a portion of Alamance County. Baltutis supports the freedom to marry in North Carolina, non-discrimination for gay and transgender employees in public and private employment, hate crime expansion, second-parent adoption for same-sex couples, and extending protections for gay and transgender kids in taxpayer-funded schools. The Elon grad and small business owner hopes to unseat Republican incumbent Rep. Stephen Ross in the fall. | Campaign Website | Follow @Ian_Baltutis

Evelyn Terry | District 71

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(Incumbent, Representing Forsyth County) A pro-equality choice out of the Triad region, Democrat Evelyn Terry is a long-time, outspoken community activist who is now a legislative ally that supports the freedom to marry, employment protections for gay and transgender employees, as well as protections for LGBT kids in taxpayer-funded schools. Terry faces Republican Kriss McCann, who she beat in the 2012 general election. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website

Mary Dickinson | District 74

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(Challenger, Forsyth County)
Challenger Mary Dickinson faces one-term Republican incumbent Debra Conrad. A career educator, Dickinson has been a Forsyth County Democratic Party volunteer since 2004 as Precinct Chair, First Vice Chair of the County Party, County Coordinator for the 2010 Billy Kennedy for Congress Campaign, Founder and Advisor to the Forsyth County Hispanic-American Democrats and Volunteer Coordinator of the Forsyth County Democrats since 2011. She also spearheaded party-wide initiatives in 2009 and 2011 to raise money and awareness of hunger issues in Forsyth County for the Second Harvest Food Bank. Dickinson supports the freedom to marry, initiatives to protect LGBT workers, and providing safe schools to all North Carolina kids. | Campaign Website | Follow @MaryMelissaD

Earle Schecter | District 82

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(Challenger, Cabarrus County)
Earle Schecter, a Concord retiree and second vice chairman of the Cabarrus County Democratic Party, is running for N.C. House District 82, to unseat Republican incumbent Rep. Larry Pittman of Concord, who, among other controversial moves that garnered him national notoriety co-sponsored an unsuccessful bill declaring an official state religion for North Carolina. Schecter, on the other hand, is a pro-equality candidate who believes education is the most pressing issue in North Carolina, and is supportive of the freedom to marry, workplace protections, as well as safer schools for all North Carolina kids. | Follow @Earle_Schecter

Jim Cates | District 86

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(Challenger, Burke County)
Before seeking the District 86 seat in the N.C. House, Democrat Jim Cates served on the Burke County Board of Commissioners for seven years, where he has shown support for civil liberties and fairness for all North Carolinians. He faces three-term incumbent Republican Rep. Hugh Blackwell, who, in 2011, voted for Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry.

Margie Storch | District 88

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(Challenger, Mecklenburg County)
Democrat Margie Storch faces one-term Republican incumbent Rob Bryan in a highly competitive race in Mecklenburg County. Unlike her opponent, Storch's self professed commitment to "Preserve citizen freedoms, voting rights and individual rights - including protections for women, the disabled, LGBT and other minorities," makes her the pro-equality choice in District 88. The former educator and community activist supports the freedom to marry, safer schools for LGBT students, and implementing protections for North Carolina's gay and transgender state workers. | Campaign Website

Sue Counts | District 93

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(Challenger, Ashe and Watauga counties)
As a former Watauga County Extension Director for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service and project manager for the Southern Appalachian Leadership Initiative on Cancer, Sue Counts has gained 27 years of experience working in public health and education at the local, state, and federal levels. Now this tireless pro-equality advocate would like to bring that experience to the North Carolina House to unseat Republican incumbent Jonathan Jordan in this highly competitive Western NC race. Counts supports marriage equality, non-discrimination and school protections for LGBT students and would be an invaluable voice for equality in the NCGA. | Campaign Website | Follow @SueCounts

Natasha Marcus | District 98

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(Challenger, Mecklenburg County)
Natasha Marcus is running in District 98 of the North Carolina House of Representatives to fill the open seat created by departing Speaker of the House Thom Tillis in her race to represent most of Huntersville, all of Davidson and Cornelius and the northern part of Charlotte. Marcus has committed to restoring our state's positive national reputation and has pledged to make North Carolina a welcoming place for people to live, work, invest, raise families and retire, including members of the LGBT community. She faces Republican challenger and Cornelius Town Commissioner John Bradford. | Campaign Website | Follow @NatashaMarcusNC

Tricia Cotham | District 100

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(Incumbent, Representing Mecklenburg County)
Pro-equality incumbent and Equality NC "Legislative Equality Champion" Rep. Tricia Cotham was one of the most vocal legislative opponents of Amendment One. Countless times, Cotham joined fellow representatives from the North Carolina General Assembly to speak at press conferences, rallies, and forums about the harms of this discriminatory marriage ban, even holding her own house party to raise money to defeat the measure on our Race to the Ballot. In addition to her vocal support for the freedom to marry and protections for LGBT state workers and teachers (she sponsored these protections in 2013), Cotham led the charge against attacks on the LGBT community this session, by vehemently defending protections for gay and transgender charter school students while also speaking out against anti-LGBT critics. While she runs unopposed, her leadership remains invaluable to any pro-equality legislation ahead. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @triciacotham

Carla Cunningham | District 106

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(Incumbent, Representing Mecklenburg County)
Democratic incumbent Rep. Carla Cunninham, represents District 106 in Mecklenburg County. She was first elected to the chamber in 2012. Cunningham, a Tar Heel native and registered nurse, received a perfect score on the Equality NC questionnaire, not only supporting the freedom to marry, but also showing a willingness to co-sponsor legislation that ensures workplace protections for gay and transgender workers, second-parent adoption rights for our families, and safer schools for LGBT kids, among other pro-equality bills. She faces Republican challenger Trey Lowe in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @CunninghamNCRep

Norm Bossert | District 113

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(Challenger, Henderson, Polk, Transylvania counties)
Norm Bossert is the 2014 Democratic candidate for District 113 of the North Carolina House of Representatives facing one-term Republican incumbent Chris Whitmire in November. Bossert, a career educator, supports marriage equality, workplace protection policies for all state employees and teachers, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity, and laws that protect gay and transgender students from discrimination in taxpayer-funded schools. | Campaign Website | Follow @VoteNormBossert

Susan Fisher | District 114

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(Incumbent, Representing Buncombe County)
Rep. Susan Fisher is considered a long-time, trusted friend to the LGBT community, and with good reason: she not only voted against Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, but openly scolded anti-equality lawmakers who would seek to marginalize individuals who fight for equality. The self-professed Progressive Democrat fully supports LGBT rights, believes sexual orientation and gender identity should be included in the state's anti-discrimination law and actively sponsored the inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in the K-12 anti-bullying legislation (School Violence Prevention Act) that passed the General Assembly in 2009. Most recently, this champion for Equality sponsored amendments to charter school legislation protecting gay and transgender kids. While she runs unopposed, her pro-equality voice in the General Assembly is essential. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @SusanFisher114

Brian Turner | District 116

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(Challenger, Buncombe County)
Asheville Democrat Brian Turner is running against anti-LGBT Republican Rep. Tim Moffitt in the fall. Turner, a former Assistant Vice Chancellor of UNC-Asheville and small business owner, has a strong investment in equal access to publicly-funded education and workplace rights and fairness. Turner hopes to unseat Moffitt, a two-term incumbent and ardent supporter of Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on marriage equality, who, in 2012, indirectly blamed his then House challenger for anti-LGBT tweets coming from Moffitt's own Twitter account which said "they should lock up all the gays on their own island." Turner's pro-equality voice in the N.C. House would mark a refreshing change from the status quo. | Campaign Website | Follow @BrianTurnerNC

State Senate

Angela Bryant | District 4

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(Incumbent, Representing Halifax, Nash, Vance, Warren, Wilson counties)
Sen. Angela R. Bryant is a former member of the North Carolina House of Representatives representing the 7th district who was appointed to her current Senate seat in 2013 after the death of Ed Jones. This long-time NC legislative ally voted against Amendment One, supports employment non-discrimination and is considered a friend to LGBT North Carolinians in the eastern part of the state. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @angelareb

Ernie Ward | District 8

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(Challenger, Bladen, Brunswick, New Hanover, Pender counties)
Brunswick County veterinarian Dr. Ernie Ward faces fellow vet and anti-LGBT Republican incumbent, Bill Rabon, who voted in favor of North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry in 2012. In addition to being a staunch supporter of animal rights, Ward is in favor of safer schools, workplace protections for gay and transgender North Carolinians, and the freedom to marry. Ward spoke passionately about the latter at the recent launch of Equality NC's eastern affiliate, telling the crowd, "I think we need to take a look at the damaging effects of Amendment One and the problem of bullying in our schools...Fairness and equality, whether economic or social, are vitally important to me.” | Campaign Website | Follow @ErnieWard_

Elizabeth Redenbaugh | District 9

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(Challenger, New Hanover County)
Former School Board member & pro-equality Democratic activist Elizabeth Redenbaugh is running for NC Senate District 9 seat because, as she puts it, "North Carolina deserves better." The Senate candidate recently won the John F. Kennedy in Courage Award for her work on the New Hanover County Board of Education, and is a staunch supporter of marriage equality, LGBT worker rights and justice, as well as a safer schools for gay and transgender kids. Redenbaugh spoke passionately about equality at the recent launch of Equality NC's eastern affiliate, telling the audience, “After listening to a sermon series about the importance of treating everyone with dignity, value and respect and seeing the way in which our legislature neglected all three of these virtues, I decided to enter public service in the hopes that we can all come together and create a greater North Carolina.” She added. “Throughout history, Americans have fought for racial, ethnic, gender, and, now, sexual orientation equality. In order to achieve equality, we must stop separating ourselves according to our differences…”. Redenbaugh faces Republican Michael Lee for the Senate seat vacated by anti-LGBT Sen. Thom Goolsby. | Campaign Website | Follow @eredenbaugh

Jane Smith | District 13

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(Challenger, Columbus, Robeson and Hoke counties)
Lumberton, NC's Jane Smith is running for NC Senate District 13, the seat formerly held by retiring Democrat Michael Walters. She faces anti-marriage equality Republican candidate W. Bernard White, Jr. in November. Education is a focus for Smith, a former career teacher at all grade levels, who also believes in the freedom to marry, workplace protections for gay and transgender North Carolinians, as well as working for safer schools for all. | Campaign Website | Follow @janesmithsenate

Dan Blue | District 14

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(Incumbent, Representing Wake County)
Friend to equality Daniel Blue, Jr. is a Democratic member of the North Carolina Senate, representing the state's 14th Senate district since his appointment in 2009. Sen. Blue served in the North Carolina House of Representatives from 1981 through 2002, and was elected Speaker in 1991. He returned to the House from 2006 through his 2009 Senate appointment and adamantly opposed Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @DanBlueNC 

Tom Bradshaw | District 15

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(Challenger, Wake County)
Former Raleigh mayor and state transportation secretary Thomas W. Bradshaw Jr., seeking the seat held by retiring Republican Sen. Neal Hunt, has been a key player in North Carolina political circles since he was elected Raleigh mayor in 1971 at the tender age of 32. The experienced 75-year-old, pro-education, pro-equality Democrat ran unopposed in his May 2014 primary, while Jim Fulghum defeated Apryl Major in the Republican primary. But Fulghum withdrew from the race on July 3, 2014, citing ongoing treatment for cancer and was replaced by Republican businessman John Alexander. Bradshaw will face Alexander in what many are calling a close Senate race in Wake County. | Campaign Website | Follow @BradshawSenate

Josh Stein | District 16

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(Incumbent, Wake County)
Sen. Josh Stein is considered one of the North Carolina General Assembly's strongest allies for LGBT equality, and with good reason: he not only voted against Amendment One, but openly admonished conservative lawmakers on the Senate floor saying, "Most of us have gay neighbors, co-workers, friends and family members. Know that if you vote for this amendment, you will cause them pain." The progressive Democratic Senate Minority Whip fully and publicly supports marriage equality and LGBT-inclusive hate crimes legislation, and actively worked to include sexual orientation and gender identity in North Carolina's historic K-12 anti-bullying legislation (School Violence Prevention Act) in 2009. For the past eight years, Stein has also sponsored workplace protection updates inclusive of gay and transgender state workers. Stein faces anti-LGBT filmmaker and ultraconservative Internet pundit Jason "Molotov" Mitchell, who, in 2010, declared his support for Uganda’s notorious anti-gay bill which at the time would have made being gay a crime punishable by death. The choice is clear. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @JoshStein_

Bryan Fulghum | District 17

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(Challenger, Wake County)
Bryan Fulghum is the Democratic candidate running in District 17 against anti-equality Republican incumbent Tamara Barringer. The openly-gay, native North Carolinian joined Equality NC during our 2014 Lobby Day of Action at the North Carolina General Assembly, where he openly advocated for the addition of gay and transgender workers in North Carolina's employment non-discrimination policies, as well as protections for LGBT students in state-funded schools. In addition, Fulghum is a strong proponent for the freedom to marry and hate crimes legislation protections all LGBT North Carolinians. | Campaign Website |

Sarah Crawford | District 18

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(Challenger, Wake and Franklin counties)
Pro-equality candidate Sarah Crawford is attempting to unseat Senate District 18's anti-LGBT incumbent Republican Chad Barefoot. (Barefoot is the son-in-law of Tami Fitzgerald, who led the pro-Amendment One campaign and who also has very close ties to other ultra-conservative hate groups across the state and nation.) Crawford not only supports the freedom to marry, but would also help pass legislation supportive of gay and transgender workers and students. She began 12 years ago working as a constituent services liaison for fellow ENC endorsee Congressman David Price on behalf of people in Wake, Durham and Orange Counties. Today, Sarah is a passionate nonprofit professional who has dedicated her career to serving others and prepared her to be a champion for ALL families in NC Senate District 18. | Campaign Website | Follow @sarahcrawfordnc

Billy Richardson | District 19

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(Challenger, Cumberland County)
Billy Richardson, a Fayetteville lawyer and former two-term member of the N.C. House, is challenging two-term Republican state Sen. Wesley Meredith in this competitive Sandhills Senate race. A moderate Democrat who was spurred to return to office because of what he sees as setbacks in education and the environment, Richardson scores high marks on pro-equality issues like support for the freedom to marry, workplace protections and making sure our schools are safe for all North Carolina students. | Campaign Website | Follow @Elect_Billy14

Floyd McKissick | District 20

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(Incumbent, Representing Durham County)
Three-term state Sen. Floyd McKissick, always a friend to equality, was a vocal opponent of Amendment One, saying the amendment would amount to “enshrine[ing] discrimination in the state constitution," and likening the marriage ban to the clause of the U.S. Constitution that, until the Civil War, established that black slaves were worth just three-fifths of a person. In addition to his support for marriage equality, McKissick remains an important ally in the fight for workplace protections for gay and transgender workers, as well as protections for LGBT students in taxpayer-funded schools. | NCGA Page | Follow @FloydMcKissick

Mike Woodard | District 22

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(Incumbent, Representing Caswell, Person and Durham counties) Sen. Mike Woodard is a progressive Democrat who was a visible and vocal opponent of Amendment One. The former Durham City Councilman participated in numerous Equality NC events and rallies to draw attention to the Amendment One harms, even sponsoring the City of Durham's resolution opposing the discriminatory constitutional rewrite. Today, he's one of our most vocal allies in the N.C. Senate, showing unwavering support for the freedom to marry, employment protections for gay and transgender workers, hate crimes legislation, and safe schools for LGBT kids. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @MikeWoodard

Valerie Foushee | District 23

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(Incumbent, Representing Chatham and Orange counties)
Running for reelection in the seat she filled for the departing Ellie Kinnaird, Valerie Foushee is the pro-equality choice to represent Chatham and Orange Counties. The proof is in the political pudding: Foushee told the Independent Weekly that a principled stand she'd be willing to take if elected (even if it cost her votes) was "opposition to Amendment One," North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry. In addition to support for marriage equality, Foushee is also an important ally in the fight for workplace non-discrimination and protections for gay and transgender youth. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @ValFoushee

Gladys Robinson | District 28

Gladys Robinson

(Incumbent, Representing Guilford County)
Senator Gladys A. Robinson, Deputy Minority Leader of the North Carolina Senate, has been a dedicated advocate for the people of North Carolina for many years. The two-term Guilford County Democrat not only voted against Amendment One, but also strongly supports employment non-discrimination and anti-bullying measures. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @GladysRobinson

John Motsinger | District 31

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(Challenger, Yadkin and Forsyth counties) 
Democrat John Motsinger faces Republican incumbent Senator Joyce Krawiec in the race for District 31 Senate seat. The Winston-Salem native brings to the N.C. Senate a quarter century of cooperative problem-solving experience as an attorney and mediator, as well as a pro-equality platform, which includes support for marriage equality, equal access to health care and workplace protections, and support for safer schools. | Campaign Website | Follow @johnmot

Jeff Jackson | District 37

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(Incumbent, Mecklenburg County) 
In May 2014, Democrats elected former assistant district attorney Jeff Jackson to replace then-state Sen. Dan Clodfelter. It took Jackson little time to prove his pro-equality chops, as only weeks after taking the seat he participated fully in both Equality NC's summer lobby day and youth lobby day of action, pledging his full support for marriage equality, protecting gay and transgender workers, and making sure taxpayer-funded schools have adequate protections for LGBT kids. While he is running unopposed, as only one of only 17 sitting pro-equality Democratic senators, his unwavering voice for all North Carolinians has never been more important in the Senate chamber. | NCGA Page | Follow @JeffJacksonNC

Joyce Waddell | District 40

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(Mecklenburg County)
Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board member Joyce Waddell will replace Malcolm Graham in the N.C. Senate this fall, representing her heavily Democratic district in east Charlotte. Waddell not only supports marriage equality, but will work for employment protections for gay and transgender workers in North Carolina, and safer schools for LGBT children. While she is running unopposed, her voice for marginalized North Carolinians has never been more important in the Senate. | Campaign Website | Follow @JoyceWaddell40

Terry Van Duyn | District 49

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(Incumbent, Representing Buncombe County)
Democratic Senator Terry Van Duyn was appointed on April 15th to fill the N.C. Senate's District 49 seat after the sudden death of veteran lawmaker Martin Nesbitt. Van Duyn is well-known as a prominent activist in Asheville, and has a strong record of support for LGBT North Carolinians and advancing equality for all, including the freedom to marry, protecting hardworking gay and transgender North Carolinians from employment discrimination, and making sure our schools are safe and accessible to LGBT kids. She faces Republican Mark Crawford in the fall. | NCGA Page | Campaign Website | Follow @VoteVanDuyn

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