Tom Bullock

Tom Bullock decided to trade the khaki clad masses and traffic of Washington DC for Charlotte in 2014. Before joining WFAE, Tom spent 15 years working for NPR.  Over that time he served as everything from an intern to senior producer of NPR’s Election Unit.  Tom also spent five years as the senior producer of NPR’s Foreign Desk where he produced and reported from Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Haiti, Egypt, Libya, Lebanon among others.  Tom is looking forward to finally convincing his young daughter, Charlotte, that her new hometown was not, in fact, named after her.

Voters in South Carolina's 5th congressional district will head to the polls May 2 to take part in a special election for Congress. The district is a sprawling one stretching through much of the upstate down to south and east of Columbia.

There are at least 14 people running for the seat.

And while the race hasn't garnered the national attention of other special elections in Kansas and Georgia, the race could have national ramifications.

This story may sound familiar.

The scene: Raleigh.

The plot: A lawmaker introduces a plan to expand Medicaid, the federal insurance program for the poor and disabled.

This has been done a number of times before. And each time has gone nowhere. But this time there's a twist.

On Wednesday the North Carolina Senate passed a tax cut bill with a catchy name. This vote was never in doubt. The bill passed the House Tuesday in a party line vote. And the bill's name played a prominent role in that debate.

As North Carolina's new treasurer, Republican Dale Folwell has two key jobs: run the pension and health care systems for state employees and retirees.

Both, Folwell says, are in trouble.

A deal to repeal House Bill 2 has been reached.

Democratic Governor Roy Cooper and Republican leaders in the General Assembly made the announcement late Wednesday night. They all called it a compromise.

After days of closed-door caucus meetings, political theater and negotiations, the announcement was surprisingly brief.

"We have reached an agreement with the governor," said Senate leader Phil Berger.

He took no questions, per an agreement he made with Governor Cooper.

A top sports recruiter in North Carolina sent out a tweet earlier today with a warning: North Carolina legislators must address HB 2 within the next 48 hours or lose out on all NCAA championship games for the next six years.

House Speaker Tim Moore has given his fellow Republican representatives a bit of homework this weekend.Consider a new plan which would change House Bill 2.

Change, yes, but not a full repeal. WFAE's Nick De La Canal talks with WFAE's Tom Bullock about the proposal.

NDC: Tom, let's  jump right in with the most well-known part of HB 2. Would this plan drop or change the bathroom provisions of the bill?

For the first time Governor Roy Cooper stood before a joint session of the legislature to deliver his state of the state address.

It was a chance for Cooper to push his priorities. But given the tone of the official Republican response, that's a tall order.

Every two years North Carolina's governor is invited to give the state of the state address. And here is how Governor Roy Cooper sees it: "I want to begin by reporting to you that the state of our state is promising."

It's an interesting choice, which needed some explanation.

The North Carolina House has passed a trio of new bills that would limit the powers of Governor Roy Cooper. Two of these bills would revoke the governor's authority to fill judicial vacancies. Reporter Tom Bullock joins Morning Edition host Marshall Terry to discuss. 

Three Superior Court judges are now deliberating a case that could have broad implications for how the state of North Carolina is run.

The plaintiff is Democratic Governor Roy Cooper. The defendants are House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate Pro Tem Phil Berger, the leaders of the Republican-dominated General Assembly.

For nearly a year North Carolina has been front and center in the debate about which bathrooms transgender people can use, thanks in large part to House Bill 2.

Now, with the Trump administration's new guidance on transgender student bathroom use, there are a lot of questions about what this means for our state.

Late Wednesday, a 5th bill to repeal HB 2 was filed at the General Assembly. But this bill stands out from the others. It is the only measure sponsored by both Democrats and Republicans.

House Bill 186 was reportedly hammered out between two Democrats and two Republicans. However, at least five other Republicans have signed on as sponsors. Representative Craig Horn of Union County is one of them.

For the second time, a North Carolina Senate committee has attempted to hold a confirmation hearing for a member of Governor Roy Cooper's cabinet. And, for the second time, that attempt has failed.

It seems our Democratic governor and GOP-controlled state Senate are playing a game of chicken, with each betting the other side will flinch on the confirmation process.

The North Carolina House passed a bill Wednesday that would make District and Superior Court races partisan. In other words, judicial candidates would have their party affiliation appear on the ballot.

The vote was unusual, 65 to 51, with Democrats and Republicans voting for and against the measure.

Proponents argue that listing a party affiliation next to a judicial candidate’s name on the ballot provides voters with needed information.

Since 2002 all judicial elections in North Carolina have been considered non-partisan races. Which means the candidates party affiliation does not appear on the ballot.

Over the last few months the General Assembly has been changing that. And Monday, a bill which would finalize the process was passed by a committee in the State House.

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