Name as it appears on the ballot: Walter Dalton
Date of birth: May 21, 1949
Campaign website: www.daltonfornc.com
Occupation & employer: Lieutenant Governor, state of North Carolina
1. Gov. Perdue is proposing a 3/4ths of 1-cent sales tax increase to balance the budget and avoid more cuts to education. Do you support her proposal? A different tax increase? Or no tax increase?
I support improving education in North Carolina and preparing tomorrow's workforce. You don't do that by cutting education funding and placing North Carolina near the bottom nationally in per pupil spending. One way to alleviate budget struggles is to reintroduce the 3/4s of a penny sales tax and I support doing just that.
2. Do you support the Racial Justice Act? Is it time for North Carolina to abolish the death penalty?
Race should never be a factor in sentencing and I support the Racial Justice Act. While I support the use of capital punishment in instances of the most heinous crimes, we must not employ the death penalty lightly. As Governor, I'll work to ensure fairness in our legal system and make certain that the death penalty is reserved only for those deserving of the ultimate punishment.
3. Are you in favor of a Voter ID law? Why or why not? What steps can the state take to increase voter participation in elections?
This is a solution in search of a problem. There is no evidence at all that we have any problem with voter fraud. Voting is one of our most precious, constitutionally protected rights. We already require ID when you register to vote but now the same Republican leadership that claims to want less government regulation and spending instead wants to add a new layer of government making it more difficult for people to vote. This "big-brother" mentality flies in the face of our Democratic ideals and is meant to discourage the electorate from being heard.
4. How will you vote on Amendment One, the amendment to ban gay marriages, civil unions and all other domestic partnerships other than the marriage of one man and one woman?
It's unconscionable that after all their talk about fixing the economy and cutting "fraud and waste", the Republican leadership focused on divisive social issues that hurt North Carolina families and actually make us less competitive in job recruitment. Amendment One is poorly written and will undermine existing health care benefits and domestic violence laws. And Amendment One is a reminder that Pat McCrory and the Republican leadership put their priority on divisive social issues, rather than creating jobs and moving North Carolina forward.
5. Do you support a woman's right to choose to terminate her pregnancy? Would you sign a bill requiring that a woman, before choosing abortion, undergo an ultrasound? Be counseled about alternatives? Or in other ways be discouraged from choosing an abortion?
I will uphold the right to choose and believe that abortion should be safe and legal. I do not believe that it's the government's role to require women to undergo invasive medical procedures before having an abortion.
6. Should the state take additional steps to encourage solar, wind and other renewable energy sources? Should additional nuclear plants in North Carolina be encouraged, discouraged or stopped?
As we recover from this national economic crisis, our next leader has to create new jobs to put North Carolinians to work now.
The Green Economy will expand, and North Carolina can create good-paying jobs and remain competitive with other states by being a leader. The green sector has already expanded to 12,500 jobs in all 100 counties, and we should -- we must -- push to create more.
As an advocate for conservation and fuel efficiency, I will continue working to fuel this growth.
While in the legislature, I fully supported the development of the state's renewable energy portfolio, which invested $2.6 billion in renewables and created 2,700 green jobs.
With all forms of energy, including nuclear, we should keep an open mind. However, we must make certain that our nuclear plants are safe and efficient and that proper regulations.
7. What should we do about fracking—extracting natural gas by fracturing rock underground? Do you view it as a technology ready to use in North Carolina? Or one to be studied carefully before any decision about it is made?
There may be benefits to and jobs created from fracking, but it is unwise to rush into a decision until all the facts are reviewed. We need to thoroughly assess the risks that fracking may cause to our drinking water, ensure that proper regulations are in place, and determine whether exploration is economically viable. We must also hear from the people of North Carolina.
8. With Dorothea Dix Hospital closing, should the state give or sell the 306-acre Dix tract for use as a park? What should the future of Dix Hill be, and what role should the state play in its future?
Dix Hill is clearly a tremendous natural asset that should be enjoyed by all North Carolinians. As Dorthea Dix Hospital closes, I hope that a public-private partnership can be forged to use the land as a park for public enjoyment.