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‘It’s not fine.’ Black mothers and babies are dying in North Carolina.

WASHINGTON — Black mothers and babies are dying at staggering rates in North Carolina and throughout the country.   The national statistics are alarming: Black women are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related issues than white women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. American Indian women are also more than twice as likely to die due to pregnancy-related issues than white women. 

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Billy Ball Commentary Top Story

In the impeachment trial, the fading credibility of Tillis, Burr and the Republican Party takes center stage

It was February 2011. I was a relatively young local government reporter and I will, if pressed, admit to being a bit starstruck that state Speaker of the House Thom Tillis stood right in front of me talking that year's budget standoff, although that gauzy feeling did not last long.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

These are the people who suffer because of NC’s stubborn refusal to expand Medicaid

Two weeks ago, the North Carolina General Assembly returned to Raleigh for what was supposed to be a special session on health care. Unfortunately, rather than addressing the lack of health coverage that is hurting our working families and advancing solutions that will help our rural hospitals, legislative leaders instead focused (unsuccessfully) on overriding Governor Cooper’s seven-month-old budget veto. The failure of our lawmakers to create a solution to close the coverage gap, is simply unacceptable.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

Hiding from the Constitution and common sense: The so-called “gun sanctuary” movement

Even before one gets to the heart of the matter – namely, a) constitutional law, and b) the dangerous message of lawlessness and violence the concept conveys – it must be stated that there is something fundamentally incongruous and just plain wrong about the idea of a “gun sanctuary.” Merriam-Webster offers multiple definitions for the word “sanctuary,” but none of them references the protection of human killing machines.

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News Top Story

North Carolina lawmakers aim to stamp out hair-based discrimination

WASHINGTON — About a year ago, a New Jersey teen was forced to cut his dreadlocks in order to participate in a high school wrestling match. The wrestler, Andrew Johnson, received a hurried haircut after he was told ...
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Environment Top Story

Monday numbers: A closer look at Duke Energy Carolinas’ proposed rate hike

Duke Energy Carolinas, LLC has filed an application with the Utilities Commission requesting authority to raise its rates for electric service. For a residential electric customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month, the current monthly bill of $102.71 would increase to $108.43 under Duke’s proposal.

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Environment Top Story

Environmental groups, scientists say DEQ’s air monitoring program fails the sniff test

Because DEQ limited air monitor sites to meet EPA criteria, they were too far from hog farms to accurately measure their emissions. When state environmental officials agreed to a historic civil rights settlement two years ago, neighbors of industrial hog operations hoped that their misery — detailed in court under oath but discounted by the pork industry, their lawyers and several legislators — would be further confirmed by data. 

When state environmental officials agreed to a historic civil rights settlement two years ago, neighbors of industrial hog operations hoped that their misery /p> ...

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Regulator, experts: State lawmaker’s explanation for incomplete ethics filing falls short

Law "is clear" Rep. Holly Grange should have reported on businesses owned by her husband even if they were inactive Last week, Policy Watch reported that State Rep. Holly Grange (R-New Hanover) had failed to disclose a business owned and operated by her husband on state Statement of Economic Interest (SEI) forms for several years.

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Billy Ball Commentary Top Story

Mark Johnson, state schools superintendent, finds comedy in one troubled school system’s tragedy

If North Carolina Republicans are confounded by the notion that every last one of them disdains public education—and, surely, not all of them do—they should tune into Mark Johnson’s bro huddle with right-wing talk show host KC O’Dea last Friday to see where a North Carolinian might get such a notion.

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Education Top Story

At long last, a plan to comply with Leandro education mandate takes shape

More than two decades after a landmark state Supreme Court ruling, NC moves a step closer to assuring every child access to a "sound, basic education" Superior Court Judge David Lee signed a consent order Monday in which the defendants and plaintiffs in the long running Leandro case agree to work “expeditiously and without delay” to create and implement a plan to provide North Carolina’s school children with a sound, basic education.

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Environment Top Story

Surveys, interviews: Responses of Chemours and DHHS to Gen X and PFAS pollution falling short

Last summer, Chemours sent contractors to the Cumberland County home of Katrina Rubiera and tested her drinking water. Shortly afterward, the first shipment of bottled water arrived. “Our well water tested positive for, well, I’m not sure, because I still don’t have my test results,” Rubiera told Policy Watch last week via email.

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Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

47th anniversary of Roe v. Wade – A tipping point away from reproductive freedom?

As we commemorated the 46th anniversary of the historic Supreme Court decision Roe v Wade last year, our thoughts were on what may happen at the U.S. Supreme Court. Two thousand nineteen was the first full year of a high court firmly stacked with justices ideologically opposed to abortion, two of whom were appointed by a president who sees overturning Roe v Wade as a key to his re-election.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

Five important reminders for a crucial year in American history

And just like that, another critical election year is upon us – maybe the most important election year in modern American history. For caring and thinking people who find themselves aghast at the greed, dishonesty, violence, phobias, and contempt for the common good and planetary wellbeing that are the hallmarks of the Trump cult, it sometimes feels as if the very soul and long-term prospects of the human species are on the line.

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News Top Story

Monday numbers: Martin Luther King Jr. Day edition

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a national holiday to honor and celebrate the life of the civil rights activist. King was a Baptist minister and activist who was considered one of the leaders of the civil rights movement until he was assassinated in 1968. The numbers below give more information about King and the life he led.  

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News Top Story Trump Administration

U.S. House votes to torpedo DeVos student loan rule over Virginia Foxx’s objections

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House passed a resolution Thursday that would overturn a Trump administration rule that critics say guts protections for defrauded student loan borrowers. The resolution expresses congressional disapproval of the so-called borrower defense rule, which was revised by Education Secretary

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News Top Story

North Carolina is projected to gain a seat in Congress. Here’s why that’s a huge deal.

North Carolina is projected to gain a U.S. House seat in the coming years, recent data show — a change that would increase the state’s influence in national politics and could lead to more money for federally funded projects and services like roads and health care facilities.

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