In N.C. Senate District 16, the INDY Endorses Luis Toledo | Our Endorsements | Indy Week

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In N.C. Senate District 16, the INDY Endorses Luis Toledo

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District 16 is a newfangled creation and thus an open seat. After much debate and consternation (and maybe a shot of whiskey and a game of rock-paper-scissors), we're throwing in with the underdog, Luis Toledo. His answers to our candidate questionnaire were thoughtful, well-informed, and pragmatic. As a policy analyst at the N.C. Justice Center who previously worked at the U.S. Department of State and as an assistant state auditor, he has the chops and experience to be an effective legislator. He's also a veteran, the son of an immigrant, was raised by a single mother, and, not for nothing, if elected he would be the only Latino in the General Assembly.

His opponent, Wiley Nickel, is himself a strong candidate with a considerable upside and lots of money in his campaign coffers. He's an attorney in Cary who previously worked for the Obama administration's advance staff and traveled with former Vice President Al Gore. He too is smart and knowledgeable and would make an excellent lawmaker. An added point in his favor is that he can raise tons of money, and since the winner of this primary will face Republican opposition and should have little trouble winning the seat in November*, Nickel could use his fundraising ability to do a lot of good for Democrats in their efforts to break the Republican supermajorities.

Still, Toledo works in the policy world every day. He's smart, capable, and progressive, and there's something to be said for the diversity his election would produce.

*Correction: This endorsement originally stated that no Republicans have filed in Senate District 16. That is incorrect. A Republican named Paul Smith has filed to run and has no opposition in the GOP primary. However, this district is drawn in such a way as to give Democrats a decided advantage.

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