Democrats Vote To Preserve Jim Crow Law

Every Democrat in the North Carolina Senate save two voted against the repeal of the pistol purchase permit. As I and others have noted many times, the history and purpose of this bill passed in 1919 was to disarm black North Carolinians.

The only two Democrats who didn’t vote against repeal of this Jim Crow law were Sen. Don Davis (D-Greene, Pitt) who didn’t vote and Sen. Ernestine Bazemore (D-Beaufort) who had an excused absence. By contrast, every Republican supported the repeal with the exception of Sen. Bob Steinburg (R-Camden) who had an excused absence.

HB 398 had already passed the NC House of Representatives with bi-partisan support.

The bill has passed its 2nd and 3rd readings and has been enrolled. It now goes to Gov. Roy Cooper’s desk where undoubtedly he will continue the Democrat’s support of a law conceived in racism. A law that research in the North Carolina Law Review has shown still discriminates against blacks.

In a day and time when I get virtually daily emails from liberal groups denouncing Confederate statues as racist symbols and college buildings being renamed due to the segregationist past of their namesakes, I find it hard to comprehend just how strongly Democrat legislators, both white and black, cling to a law conceived in racism. Not only was it conceived in racism but the law still has a disparate impact on minorities.

I guess Democrats are more afraid of white women funded by a New York billionaire than they are of their own minority constituents. Go figure.

HB 398 Coming To Vote In NC Today

HB 398, the repeal of North Carolina’s pistol purchase permit, will be coming up for a vote in the NC Senate soon today. That may even be today as it has passed both the Senate Judiciary and Rules Committee. The NC House has already approved the repeal with a bipartisan majority. Undoubtedly, Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) will veto it and it will come up for an override. Pressure needs to be put on both Republicans and Democrats in the NC Senate to pass the bill and then to vote for the override.

Grass Roots North Carolina has been leading the fight on this for years. They sent out the following alert last night. I have sent my letters and I’d encourage you to do so as well. On the letter to Democrats, I added that we take down Confederate monuments as “racist” – shouldn’t we repeal a law that is actually still discriminating against blacks?

Action Vital to Repeal Purchase Permits

HB 398 to repeal our Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit law passed the Senate Rules Committee today and heads to the floor for a vote as early as tomorrow. Please contact all members of the NC Senate immediately!
In today’s committee hearing, articulate defense of the bill was provided by sponsor Rep. Jay Adams (R-Catawba), Sen. Chuck Edwards (R- Buncombe, Henderson, Transylvania) and Sen. Ralph Hise (R- Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Yancey). The usual leftist whining was made by Sen. Jay Chaudhuri (D-Wake). Thanks are also due Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and Rules Chair Sen. Bill Rabon for moving HB 398 in a timely fashion.
GRNC president Paul Valone testified to the committee, noting both the racist origins of the law. (which is being racially applied even today), and the fact that GRNC has so far had to sue two sheriffs to get permits issued in the 14 days required by statute even as broad scale civil unrest causes thousands of new gun owners to unsuccessfully seek permits. After his testimony, Chaudhuri commented that it was acceptable that gun owners should have to sue sheriffs merely to exercise their rights. 
As usual, Marcus and representatives of North Carolinians “Against Gun Violence” (formerly North Carolinians for Gun Control) promulgated mistruths about guns being purchased without background checks at gun shows and online sales, blithely ignoring the reality that the same laws apply in those venues as anywhere else. 
Amusingly enough, Marcus admitted the Jim Crow discriminatory origins of a law which is being used even now to disproportionately deny guns to minorities, meaning that in the interest of banning guns, Democrats are now defending racism.
Perhaps most ironic was Marcus’ claim that she is “not anti-gun” but merely “anti-violence,” which not only belied the fact that she and others like her always support restrictions on gun ownership, but also attempted to falsely cast gun rights supporters as “pro-violence.”
Alert Writers needed. Click here for more information…
Support “Rights Watch International Learn more about Rights Watch International
You shop. Amazon Gives. (What is Amazon Smile?)
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED!
HB 398 Will have a probable floor vote tomorrow. Accordingly, we need you to contact all members of the NC Senate to tell them to support the bill. Please note that we are using different messages for Republicans vs. Democrats.

Senate Republicans:  Ted.Alexander@ncleg.gov; Deanna.Ballard@ncleg.gov; Lisa.Barnes@ncleg.gov; Phil.Berger@ncleg.gov; Danny.Britt@ncleg.gov; Jim.Burgin@ncleg.gov;Kevin.Corbin@ncleg.gov; David.Craven@ncleg.gov; Warren.Daniel@ncleg.gov; Chuck.Edwards@ncleg.gov; Carl.Ford@ncleg.gov; Amy.Galey@ncleg.gov; Kathy.Harrington@ncleg.gov; Ralph.Hise@ncleg.gov; Brent.Jackson@ncleg.gov; Steve.Jarvis@ncleg.gov; Todd.Johnson@ncleg.gov; Joyce.Krawiec@ncleg.gov; Michael.Lazzara@ncleg.gov; Michael.Lee@ncleg.gov; Tom.McInnis@ncleg.gov; Paul.Newton@ncleg.gov; Jim.Perry@ncleg.gov; Dean.Proctor@ncleg.gov;Bill.Rabon@ncleg.gov; Norman.Sanderson@ncleg.gov; Vickie.Sawyer@ncleg.gov; Bob.Steinburg@ncleg.gov
Senate Democrats:
Sydney.Batch@ncleg.gov; Ernestine.Bazemore@ncleg.gov; Dan.Blue@ncleg.gov; Jay.Chaudhuri@ncleg.gov; Ben.Clark@ncleg.gov; Sarah.Crawford@ncleg.gov;Don.Davis@ncleg.gov; Kirk.deViere@ncleg.gov; Toby.Fitch@ncleg.gov; Valerie.Foushee@ncleg.gov; Michael.Garrett@ncleg.gov; Jeff.Jackson@ncleg.gov; Paul.Lowe@ncleg.gov; Natasha.Marcus@ncleg.gov; Julie.Mayfield@ncleg.gov; Mujtaba.Mohammed@ncleg.gov; Natalie.Murdock@ncleg.gov; Wiley.Nickel@ncleg.gov;Gladys.Robinson@ncleg.gov; DeAndrea.Salvador@ncleg.gov; Joyce.Waddell@ncleg.gov; Mike.Woodard@ncleg.gov  
DELIVER THIS MESSAGE

Message for Senate Republicans: Suggested subject: “Support HB 398: Repeal archaic permit law”   Dear Senator:
Please accept my thanks to Republicans for moving HB 398, “Repeal Purchase Permit Law,”. 
If the law is repealed, background checks for gun purchases will be done at the time of sale, rather than up to five years earlier, as under current law. In fact, the Charlotte Observer documented cases of people getting purchase permits, committing crimes, but still having permits available for use (and to bypass the National Instant Background Check System) even after becoming ineligible to purchase firearms.
This year, the North Carolina Sheriffs Association reversed its position and now supports repealing the law. With both gun rights supporters and law enforcement organizations now supporting repeal, only gun control advocates want to keep the system despite the fact that it gives criminal access to firearms.
I will be monitoring all actions on HB 398 through Grass Roots North Carolina legislative alerts.
Respectfully, Message for Senate Democrats: Suggested subject: “Support HB 398: Repeal racist permit law”
Dear Senator:
In the interest of bringing background checks into the 21st Century, I strongly urge you to support HB 398, “Pistol Purchase Permit Repeal.” The North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association now supports repeal of our Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit law as “duplicative.” Meanwhile, as depicted in a recent NC Law Review paper, black applicants are being denied permits at a rate three times that of whites, revealing that racism in permit issuance continues to this day.
Moreover, sheriffs in Wake, Mecklenburg and Guilford counties are using the law to obstruct lawful citizens from obtaining handguns for self-defense, even as rising civil unrest around the country makes it more vital than ever that citizens have the means to defend their families.
Worse, an investigation by the Charlotte Observer found that pistol purchase permits, which are untraceable and valid for five years, continue to be held – and potentially used to bypass background checks – by people who subsequently become ineligible to own guns.
I strongly encourage you to support repeal of the archaic permit law, after which background checks for gun purchases will be done at the point of sale, not up to five years prior. I will continue to monitor this issue through Grass Roots North Carolina legislative alerts.
Respectfully,

Gov. Cooper Continues To Put Churches At Risk

The North Carolina General Assembly passed SB 43 – Protect Religious Meeting Places with bipartisan majorities. The bill would have allowed concealed carry at churches with attached private schools outside of school and extracurricular hours. In other words, a church could have their own security team made up of church members during their church services. We have seen too many times that churches have become the targets of evil people.

Despite all the safeguards in place, Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) again vetoed a bill that would protected churches. He said in his veto statement, “For the safety of students and teachers, North Carolina should keep guns off school grounds.” According to WRAL, this was Cooper’s 55th veto since first taking office. It is important to note here again that the bill only impacted churches with private schools and that the definition of school hours was even more restrictive than the bill he vetoed in the last session of the General Assembly.

Riverside Independent Baptist Church, Lumberton, NC

The question now becomes will the Democrats who voted for the bill decide that it is more important to stand with the governor and party or with church people. In 2020, enough Democrats thought party was more important than church people and sustained Cooper’s veto of H652. The picture above is of Riverside Independent Baptist Church and Riverside Christian Academy. It is in the district of Rep. Charles Graham (D-Robeson) who voted in favor of the bill.

Rev. Mark Creech, Executive Director of the Christian Action League, did not hold back in his criticism of the veto. He said, in part:

“The legislation the Governor vetoed provided a simple carve-out in the law for churches associated with private Christian schools. This is the second time he has vetoed such legislation. His expressed concerns for rejecting the measure, however, were respected and addressed in this bill. His veto is, therefore, simply unreasonable.

“It is quite cost-prohibitive for many of the churches associated with private Christian schools to afford to hire off-duty police officers. Without this legislation, these churches are vulnerable to some crazed soul who might walk in and want to start shooting. The threat is real and urgent! 

“The Governor’s veto makes me wonder how long it’s been since he’s been to church. Surely he understands there are teachers and students in our Sunday School classes. Other churches are allowed to protect their teachers and students in Sunday Schools, but not churches connected with schools. It makes no sense. 

“Is there some personal animus by the Governor toward private Christian education? Or is he operating entirely as a liberal ideologue against it? Because he has now made it abundantly clear, if a church chooses to provide a Christian education to its community, it will not be allowed to defend itself against persons with murderous intent. That will undoubtedly work to quash any growth of church-sponsored schools.

He went on to add that if a mass shooting happened at one of these churches the blood of the slain would be on Cooper’s hand.

Paul Valone, president of Grass Roots North Carolina, also reacted strongly to the veto.

“Given that North Carolina concealed handgun permit-holders have been safely carrying in many churches since 1995, there is no rational reason for Governor Cooper’s veto of SB 43. It is disappointing but by no means surprising that Governor Cooper puts politics ahead of keeping religious meeting places safe from increasingly common violent attacks. 

“GRNC is calling upon legislators of both parties to over-ride the veto. If the effort fails and a church killing takes place in North Carolina as it has elsewhere, we will hold responsible both Gov. Cooper and those who support his veto.”

While calling the Democrats who voted for the bill as well as the many who just so happened to be absent the day of the vote could have impact, I suggest a different approach.

I think the churches impacted that are in the districts of these Democrats should organize a vigil or demonstration outside the home of each and every one of these legislators. I would make sure that there were a lot of elderly and young children in the crowd. They should stand their silently holding signs saying something like “Are we not worthy of protection?” I would make sure every media outlet in the region was alerted and on scene. The pastor should have a concise statement ready to give the press as well. Remember that if there is one thing politicians hate, it is being embarrassed in the media. The time for being meek and subservient is over.

Eddie Bridges, NC Conservationist, RIP

The name Eddie Bridges might not ring a bell but in North Carolina he made an indelible mark on wildlife conservation in this state. He served on the NC Wildlife Resources Commission for 12 years and was the father of the lifetime hunting, fishing, and sportsman’s licenses. In addition, he helped start the tax check-off for the nongame and endangered wildlife fund and the NC Waterfowl Stamp and Print Program.

In addition to his work with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission, in 1992 he founded and served as the voluntary, unpaid, executive director of the North Carolina Wildlife Habitat Foundation. That foundation has raised over $15 million to help buy land for wildlife, fund projects and studies, and to maintain over 2,000 acres of conservation easements.

The NC Wildlife Resources Commission back in 2013 listed all the awards Bridges won for his conservation work.

The Thomas L. Quay Wildlife Diversity Award is the latest in a long line of prestigious awards given to Bridges over the years. These include the Chevron Conservation Award in 1989;the Sol Feinstone Environmental Award in 1991; the N.C. Wildlife Federation’s Governor’s Award of Excellence in 1993 as the North Carolina Conservationist of the Year; the National Budweiser Conservationist of the year; the Wildlife Federation’s Hall of Fame in 2004; Field & Stream magazine’s Conservation Hero of the Year in 2012; and most recently, the Governor’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 2013.

On winning the Field & Stream Conservation Hero of the Year Award, he said this to the Greensboro Daily News.

“It’s also crucial to keep kids interested,” he told Field & Stream in 2012. “I’ve been hunting and fishing since I was 6 years old, and I’m still kind of addicted to it. … I just turned 79, I don’t wear glasses and I don’t need a walker or false teeth, so I think it’s done me some good.”

Bridges estimated he raised over $200 million for wildlife, conservation, and his alma mater Elon University where he played baseball and football. On raising the money for conservation, he said:

“It’s about the thousands of people who are members of my foundation and other interested folk who have embraced my cause,” Bridges told the News & Record’s Jeff Mills in 2019. “It’s about the 1 million men, women and children who hunt and fish in North Carolina, people who have generated $2.3 billion a year for our state’s economy. No other sport has done that.”

A long-time resident of Greensboro, Bridges was 87.

What Does NC Have That SC Doesn’t?

Well, other than higher mountains, more people, and more area, you mean?

North Carolina has open carry as a constitutional right thanks to the NC Supreme Court’s 1922 decision in State v. Kerner. South Carolinians have been fighting to get open carry as a constitutional right.

It looks like thanks to the SC State Senate that their fight will continue on even longer. An amendment to the bill that would allow open carry with a permit was defeated yesterday 25-21.

From the AP:

Several Republican leaders in the Senate weren’t ready to go as far as open carry without a permit.

“I think training and background checks are important,” said Senate Majority Leader Shane Massey, a Republican from Edgefield.

Senators expected to debate well into Wednesday night. Once the day is finished, there are four more days left in the General Assembly’s session.

Gun rights groups have made open carry a priority for years and put extra pressure on senators after Republicans won an extra three seats in the 2020 elections.

Opponents of the open carry bill include a number of current law enforcement leaders, including State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel, and the police chiefs and sheriffs in some of the state’s largest population centers.

South Carolina is one of only five states without some type of open carry law, joining atypical partners such as California, Florida, Illinois and New York.

I feel bad for South Carolinians on this. However, part of me is somewhat amused by it. The amusement comes because South Carolina has always been considered the epitome of gentility unlike us ruffians in “vale of humility” called North Carolina. Old court cases in the 1800s held that only ruffians, scofflaws, and the like carried concealed whereas gentlemen carried their arms openly.

Pistol Purchase Permit Repeal Passes NC House

The North Carolina House of Representatives passed H398 yesterday which repeals the state’s Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit. The repeal passed on a vote of 69-48 with three absences. The bill had the support of the NC Sheriffs’ Association.

Grass Roots North Carolina which has fought for the repeal for years released this statement:

By a vote of 69-48, today the NC House passed H. 398 to repeal our Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit system. Having passed one chamber before next week’s crossover deadline, the bill remains alive for action in the Senate. Grass Roots North Carolina has been the main advocate for the bill, having worked for nearly twenty years to repeal the archaic law.

GRNC president Paul Valone said, “Today, the North Carolina General Assembly has taken a step toward abolishing a vestige of the Jim Crow era which is being used by a small number of sheriffs to obstruct citizens from protecting their families, as well as bringing gun purchase background checks into the 21st Century. GRNC would like to thank primary bill sponsor Rep. Jay Adams and Republican leadership. We would also like to thank the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association for its support.”

Looking at the breakdown of the vote, you had two Democrats and 67 Republicans voting for passage while 47 Democrats and one Republican opposed passage. The Democrats supporting passage of the bill were Rep. Shelly Willingham (D-Martin/Edgecombe), an African-American, and Rep. Michael Wray (D-Halifax/Northampton). The lone Republican who opposed the repeal was Rep. Dudley Greene (R-Avery/McDowell/Mitchell) who had previously served as sheriff of McDowell County.

My own representative, Rep. Brian Turner (D-Buncombe), is more concerned about allowing you to walk around downtown Asheville with a drink in your hands than about repealing a bill that was meant to discriminate against blacks. As The Animals sang in 1965, we gotta get out of this place!

If you live in North Carolina, go here to see if your representative thinks you still should be living under a law that was intended to curtail the rights of African-Americans or not.

Vote On H398 Is Wednesday

It finally looks like the North Carolina pistol purchase permit will be on its way out. A vote in the NC House is scheduled for Wednesday, May 5th.

Of course, I fully expect Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) to veto H398 if it passes the North Carolina General Assembly. An override will depend upon whether Democrats want to defend a racist, Jim Crow-era law that has been shown still to discriminate against African-Americans.

As Grass Roots North Carolina says in the alert, now is the time to put on and keep up the pressure.

Call your own representative, Democrat or Republican, and demand they pass this bill. If you don’t know who your representative is, use this tool.

Email every House Republican. Their email addresses are in the alert. You may need to copy the email addresses into your word processor and convert the “;” into a “,” depending upon your email program. I’d also suggest pasting them in as a BCC. Two minutes of copy and paste is all it takes. I just did it.

If you are not on the Grass Roots North Carolina email alert list, you need to be! Go here to sign up.

NC’s Pistol Purchase Permit May Be Eliminated

That 1919 remnant of the Jim Crow era, North Carolina’s pistol purchase permit, may finally be on its way out. The North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association has finally endorsed its elimination and the House Judiciary 4 Committee voted out a bill that would do away with it.

Research published in the North Carolina Law Review showed that African-Americans were three times as likely to be denied than whites. This comes from a study of permits issued in Wake County where Sheriff Gerald Baker (D-Wake) is facing lawsuits for refusing to issue permits “due to COVID”.

This is not a done deal and I fully expect Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) to veto it. The law was intended to deny constitutional rights to African-Americans and its practice still does. Let him veto it and then try and defend that!

Since this is not a done deal, Grass Roots North Carolina is calling people to contact first Republicans and then later Democrats to pass this bill.

House Committee Passes Purchase Permit Repeal
Thanks to Reps. Jay Adams, Hugh Blackwell, Keith Kidwell, and George Cleveland, today the NC House Judiciary 4 Committee passed H398, a full repeal of North Carolina’s Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit (PPP) law – a law which not only allows some urban sheriffs to obstruct people from buying handguns for self-protection, but to this day also disproportionally denies minorities the ability to buy handguns for self-defense.

Not only are Republicans on board with repealing the racist law, but now the NC Sheriffs’ Association has joined them in supporting repeal. And who does that leave still supporting racist gun control? Democrats.
Said GRNC president Paul Valone:
“We are encouraged to see that the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association now agrees to bring gun purchases in North Carolina into the 21st Century by eliminating our Jim Crow-era permit system and requiring background checks at the point of sale. Given that a recent UNC School of Law paper found that in Wake County, black applicants are being denied permits three times more often than whites, it is clear that racism in issuing permits continues to this day. Consequently, we are calling upon Democrat legislators to join in repealing this racist law.”

Presuming the PPP repeal passes the General Assembly, anti-gun Democrat Governor Roy Cooper will certainly veto it. Because Republicans don’t have the 6/10 majority in either chamber that is required to over-ride Cooper’s veto, at least some Democrats will have to vote to over-ride.

Will Democrats do the right thing, or will they be the only ones left clinging to racist gun control? Please note that this message goes to Republicans.

Very soon, we will issue another alert with a message for Democrats.

EMAIL ALL NC HOUSE REPUBLICANS:  Please note that the large number of Republican recipients may require you to break up your message into multiple groups.   
CALL YOUR NC HOUSE REP:  You can find your NC House rep by going to: 

https://ncleg.gov/FindYourLegislators

PLEASE CONTRIBUTE TO GRNC: Help us fight gun control while we promote Second Amendment principles. Please CLICK HERE to contribute. Bear in mind that GRNC is an all-volunteer organization, so you can be sure your donations are put to the best possible use. Any amount helps, and any amount is appreciated.

CONTACT INFO
 
Copy each block of address and paste into an email

 
Edward.Goodwin@ncleg.gov; Larry.Yarborough@ncleg.gov; Steve.Tyson@ncleg.gov;   Jimmy.Dixon@ncleg.gov;  Bobby.Hanig@ncleg.gov; Matthew.Winslow@ncleg.gov;  John.Bell@ncleg.gov;  Chris.Humphrey@ncleg.gov; Pat.McElraft@ncleg.gov;  Phil.Shepard@ncleg.gov; Carson.Smith@ncleg.gov; Frank.Iler@ncleg.gov;  Charles.Miller@ncleg.gov; Ted.Davis@ncleg.gov;  William.Brisson@ncleg.gov;   Donna.White@ncleg.gov;  Larry.Strickland@ncleg.gov; 

Erin.Pare@ncleg.gov;                           Diane.Wheatley@ncleg.gov;  John.Szoka@ncleg.gov;  Brenden.Jones@ncleg.gov;  Graig.Meyer@ncleg.gov;                              John.Sauls@ncleg.gov;  Jamie.Boles@ncleg.gov;                        Howard.Penny@ncleg.gov;  Mark.Brody@ncleg.gov;                            Jon.Hardister@ncleg.gov; 
 
John.Faircloth@ncleg.gov;  Dennis.Riddell@ncleg.gov; Jerry.Carter@ncleg.gov; Ben.Moss@ncleg.gov; Wayne.Sasser@ncleg.gov; David.Willis@ncleg.gov; Dean.Arp@ncleg.gov; Pat.Hurley@ncleg.gov;  Lee.Zachary@ncleg.gov; Jeff.Zenger@ncleg.gov; Donny.Lambeth@ncleg.gov; Harry.Warren@ncleg.gov; Julia.Howard@ncleg.gov; Allen.McNeill@ncleg.gov; Sam.Watford@ncleg.gov; Larry.Potts@ncleg.gov; Kristin.Baker@ncleg.gov;  Dudley.Greene@ncleg.gov; Hugh.Blackwell@ncleg.gov; Destin.Hall@ncleg.gov;  Mitchell.Setzer@ncleg.gov; Sarah.Stevens@ncleg.gov
 
Kyle.Hall@ncleg.gov;  Ray.Pickett@ncleg.gov; Jeffrey.Elmore@ncleg.gov; Grey.Mills@ncleg.gov;  Jason.Saine@ncleg.gov; John.Bradford@ncleg.gov;  John.Torbett@ncleg.gov; Dana.Bumgardner@ncleg.gov; Kelly.Hastings@ncleg.gov; Tim.Moore@ncleg.gov; David.Rogers@ncleg.gov; Jake.Johnson@ncleg.gov;  Tim.Moffitt@ncleg.gov; Mark.Pless@ncleg.gov; Mike.Clampitt@ncleg.gov; Karl.Gillespie@ncleg.govsomebody@ncleg.net
 
DELIVER THIS MESSAGE

Suggested Subject: “Repeal our racist pistol purchase permit law”  
 
Dear NC House Representative:
 
As stated by NC Sheriffs’ Association Executive Director Eddie Caldwell in the Judiciary 4 Committee, the association now supports the repeal of our Jim-Crow era pistol purchase permit system. Describing recent improvements to North Carolina reporting to the computerized National Instant Background Check System (NICS), Caldwell described the archaic and racist permit law as “duplicative.”

A recent UNC Law School paper noted that in Wake County alone, from 2015 to 2020, black applicants were denied permits at a rate three times that of whites, demonstrating that racism in the permit law continues to this day. In early 2020, Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker decided to stop issuing permits altogether in violation of G.S. 14-404(f), which requires permits to be issued to qualified applicants within 14 days. In other urban North Carolina counties, permits are still being delayed by weeks, even months.

Finally, purchase permits remain valid for 5 years, raising the possibility that an individual could obtain a permit, commit a crime and then, once disqualified from buying a firearm, use the 5-year-old permit to bypass NICS.

I strongly urge you to support the repeal of our archaic, racist, and obstructionist pistol purchase permit law. I will be monitoring this issue through Grass Roots North Carolina legislative alerts.


Respectfully,

NC Republicans Waffle on Pistol Purchase Permit Fix

In a year in which we saw the state of Iowa ditch their requirement for a pistol purchase permit, the Republicans in the North Carolina General Assembly still are kowtowing to the NC Sheriffs Association. Certain sheriffs in North Carolina have been obstructing the issuance of pistol purchase permits since the beginning of the pandemic.

A simple bill, HB 398, would provide citizens of a county an alternative where their sheriff has been one of these obstructionists. It simply allows them to apply for a permit in an adjoining county. So, for example, a citizen of Wake County, where Sheriff Gerald Baker has been such an obstructionist that he is being sued in US District court, could apply for a permit in one of the seven adjoining counties. This bill is a mere tweak to a Jim Crow law that should have been ditched years ago. Notwithstanding that the sheriffs of the seven largest counties in the state are all African-American who you would think would want such a racist law abolished, the NC Sheriffs Association seems to be objecting to such a fix. That has the GOP in the General Assembly – or some of them – caving.

Grass Roots North Carolina has fought the issue for over 20 years. They just issued an alert after HB 398 was removed from a hearing calendar.

NC SHERIFFS EFFECTIVELY SAY ‘POUND SAND’
In the early months of the pandemic, GRNC began receiving complaints of abuse of the NC pistol purchase permit system by sheriffs in Wake and Mecklenburg counties and elsewhere. Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker even tried to stop issuing permits altogether…until GRNC and two other organizations sued him. Yet despite even this, purchase permit and concealed handgun applicants are reporting multi-month delays in scheduling appointments for permits.

NC Sheriffs effectively say ‘pound sand’ GRNC has been trying to repeal the Jim Crow-era purchase permit law for 20+ years, even getting a repeal through the NC Senate in 2014. Unfortunately, each time we have encountered opposition from the powerful NC Sheriffs Association (NCSA).

In the interest of getting permits into the hands of applicants until we can fully repeal the law, Representative Jay Adams (R-Catawba, GRNC ****) introduced HB 398, a simple bill to at least allow applicants to apply in counties adjoining their county of residence if their own sheriff is being obstructionist. 

The bill was calendared for a hearing last Wednesday…until, apparently, the Sheriffs’ association objected to even that minor change. Then Judiciary 4 Committee Chair Hugh Blackwell (R-Burke) pulled it from the calendar at the last minute, claiming leadership planned to “improve” the bill, but not telling anyone what the “improvements” might be, suggesting that Republicans might once again be caving to the NCSA
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED!
With the crossover deadline little more than a month away, your IMMEDIATE action is crucial. Please send three emails and make three phone calls:
CALL AND EMAIL: NC House Speaker Tim Moore at: (704) 739-1221   (919) 733-3451   Tim.Moore@ncleg.gov 

CALL AND EMAIL: NC House Rules Chair Destin Hall at: (919) 733-5931   (919) 733-5931   Destin.Hall@ncleg.gov

CALL AND EMAIL: NC House Judiciary 4 Committee Chair Hugh Blackwell at: (919) 733-5805   (919) 733-5805  Hugh.Blackwell@ncleg.gov

CONTACT INFO Tim.Moore@ncleg.gov; Destin.Hall@ncleg.gov; Hugh.Blackwell@ncleg.gov  
DELIVER THIS MESSAGE

Suggested Subject: “Enough is enough: Pistol permit obstruction must stop!”    

Dear :[Speaker Moore/Rep. ___:]
You must stop obstruction of NC pistol purchase permits and the resulting denial of citizens’ rights by returning House Bill 398 to the House calendar for immediate action.

Using COVID-19 and increased permit applications as an excuse, sheriffs in Wake and Mecklenburg counties, among others, are obstructing pistol purchase permits and concealed handgun permits, often taking months to schedule appointments for applications, even in the face of multiple lawsuits filed by Grass Roots North Carolina and others.
For years, sheriffs have objected to repealing our Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit law – a racist law passed to prevent minorities from buying guns for self-protection. Now we are encountering resistance even to a small and simple change which would allow permit applicants to bypass obstructionist sheriffs by applying in adjacent counties.

Enough is enough. Citizens have been denied their right to purchase handguns for self-protection for entirely too long. In the 2020 elections, gun voters supported you because they expect you to protect and defend the Second Amendment. 

It is now time for you to do what we elected you to do by passing House Bill 398. Additionally, please advise me of your position on this issue. I will be monitoring your actions through Grass Roots North Carolina legislative alerts.
Respectfully,

The official state motto of North Carolina is Esse Quam Videri. Translated from the Latin it means “To be rather than to seem.” The Republicans in the General Assembly always say they support the Second Amendment and gun rights. If so, now is the time for them to be rather than to seem!

Are You Registered To Vote?

If you are a gun owner and are not registered to vote, why the hell not? The rest of us can only do so much to preserve your rights while you freeload.

I can’t speak for other states but tomorrow is the last regular day to register to vote in North Carolina. You can also do it in person if you early vote. If you live here and aren’t registered to vote, do it! It is so damn easy to register now that not being registered to vote is downright pathetic. Unlike when I marched myself down to the Guilford County Courthouse on my 18th birthday in 1975, you can do it online at the DMV!

If you think you are registered but aren’t sure, you can check it here.

Now if you are trying to figure out who is pro-gun and who is anti-gun, Grass Roots North Carolina – Political Victory Fund can help. To save you the hassle of actually following a link and looking it up, every one of their recommendations is below. GRNC-PVF makes recommendations and not endorsements.

They didn’t make a recommendation in Commissioner of Agriculture race so I’ll do it – Steve Troxler (R-NC) is the incumbent and is running against Jenna Wadsworth (D-NC). Wadsworth, you may remember, posted a TikTok where she smirked about President Trump contracting COVID-19. She took it down but it went viral anyway. I believe she passed it off as a spur of the moment thing but, as someone noted on Twitter, the lighting was perfect and she had her “warpaint” on.

GRNC-PVF Candidate Recommendations
IMPORTANT: Voter registration deadline is October 9Early voting opens on October 15
REGISTER TO VOTE:https://www.ncsbe.gov/registering/how-register CHECK YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION:https://vt.ncsbe.gov/RegLkup/Note: There are numerous late surveys and corrected errors in this version, so please recheck any relevant GRNC-PVF candidate recommendations.The 2020 election is a referendum not only on the Second Amendment, but on diametrically opposed plans for the future of our Republic. Key to the outcome of that election is North Carolina, which is now regarded as a hotly contested “battleground state.” Translated, the future of our Republic is now in your hands. If you fail to vote; if you fail to bring like-minded people to the polls, control of the White House, Congress and the North Carolina General Assembly hangs in the balance.
Candidate recommendations versus evaluations: Below are recommendations for effective voting strategies by the Grass Roots North Carolina Political Victory Fund. Candidate recommendations, which are more limited than blanket “endorsements,” are not made in all races, only in races where a clear pro-gun candidate stands out or where strategic voting is necessary to keep anti-gun candidates out of office.
Recommendations differ from GRNC candidate evaluations. While the evaluations are intended to provide an objective measure of where candidates stand on Second Amendment issues, GRNC–PVF recommendations are analytical and therefore subject to interpretation. For a full explanation of GRNC’s objective star evaluations, go to: www.grnc.org/remember-in-november/grnc-candidate-evaluations-2020
Important note: Candidates who lack voting records or other history on Second Amendment issues and who fail to return GRNC’s candidate survey automatically receive a zero star evaluation (0) on the assumption that they are hiding their position from gun voters. Every election year, we receive complaints about ostensibly pro-gun candidates who receive zero star evaluations due to failure to return the survey. 
Each candidate gets TWO chances to complete the GRNC survey: prior to the Primary Election, each is mailed to the address he or she registered with the State Board of Elections directing them to mail, fax, email, or complete the survey online; prior to the General Election, each gets an additional postcard directing them to complete the survey online. If they fail to return the survey twice, we cannot help candidates who will not help themselves.
INTRODUCTION
This guide estimates where candidates stand on gun issues by comparing their views with those of a control group of gun owners. As noted below, a “4-STAR” candidate agrees with the control group on at least 90% of gun issues, a 3-STAR agrees on at least 80%, a 2-STAR on at least 70%, a 1-STAR on at least 60%, and a 0-STAR candidate agrees on less than 60% of gun issues.
Registering & Voting:
Option 1: Register in-person at your county Board of Elections office or mail registration forms to the office by October 9. Forms are available at Board of Elections offices, county libraries, county offices or online at http://www.ncsbe.gov/ by clicking on “Voter Registration,” then “Updating Voter Registration” and then using the link for “North Carolina Voter Registration Application.”
(If you miss the Oct 9 deadline, one-stop registration and voting is available until Oct. 31)Option 2: You may register at DMV offices or other state agencies which dispense benefits (e.g. DSS, WIC, ESC, etc).
Note: If you are a DMV customer with a NC driver’s license or DMV-issued ID, you may now register to vote or change certain parts of your registration online. Using this service existing DMV customers may register to vote, update their voter registration address, or update their party affiliation. For information: www.ncsbe.gov/Voters/Registering-to-Vote 
Option 3: You may register and vote on the same day at your county’s one-stop voting locations between October 15 and October 31.
Getting Voter Information:
Under the “Web tools” icon on the NCSBE home page at http://www.ncsbe.gov/ you will find links to look up your voter registration, one-stop voting site, election day polling place and provisional ballot. For early voting hours in your county, you may call your Board of Elections.
Important Deadlines for General Election:
October 9: Deadline for voter registration is 5 PM. If you miss the registration deadline you may still register and vote at the same time during the one-stop early voting period – October 15-31.October 15: “One-stop” voting/registration begins.October 27: Applications for absentee ballots must be received by 5 PM, but election board recommends earlier.October 31: “One-stop” voting/registration ends.November 3: Election Day, polls open 6:30 AM until 7:30 PM. (If you are in line by 7:30 PM, you can vote.)Deadline for absentee ballots: Voted absentee ballots (placed inside the container-return envelope) must be returned to county board of elections no later than 5 PM on Election Day. Absentee ballots received after 5 PM on Election Day will be timely only if received by mail no later than 5 PM on the 3rd day following date of election and postmarked on or before Election Day. Envelope may be mailed or delivered in person to county board of elections office or an open early voting site during early voting period. Only voter or voter’s near relative may return absentee ballot to board of elections.
GRNC-PVF CANDIDATE RECOMMENDATIONSKey to listings: Included in listings below are scores on GRNC’s candidate survey, pro-gun voting percentage, and GRNC star evaluation (0-star, *, **, ***, or ****, depending on how closely a candidate can be expected to agree with a control group of conservative gun owners). “NR” means the candidate failed to return GRNC’s survey which, for candidates without voting records, gives the candidate a 0-star (0) evaluation. See GRNC “Remember in November” candidate evaluations for a complete explanation.
Important notes about candidate recommendations:
We cannot help candidates who will not help themselves: All candidates were mailed surveys to the address they registered with the State Board of Elections prior to the Primary Elections. Each who did not return the survey received a second mailing prior to the General Election. If the candidate refused to complete the survey both times and has no gun-related voting record, he or she received a GRNC 0-star evaluation and no GRNC-PVF candidate recommendation.Abbreviations: “NR” means “no response” to GRNC survey. “NV” is an incumbent who has not cast a gun vote.Races covered: With occasional exceptions, only contested races are covered. In districts where no clear gun rights supporter is running, no recommendation will be made.Interpreting a listing: Each listing contains the candidate’s GRNC star evaluation and the factor (e.g. votes, survey, etc.) which most closely represents the star evaluation. Occasionally, you will see voting records that don’t fully align with the star evaluation, possibly due to other metrics (e.g. bill sponsorship or recent deterioration in voting record). For a more complete analysis of a given candidate, see GRNC “Remember in November” candidate evaluations.GRNC-PVF recommendations are NOT “endorsements”: Recommendations are made SOLELY on Second Amendment stances. With rare exceptions, GRNC-PVF does NOT give blanket “endorsements” to candidates, nor do we study their stance on other issues.Errors: In covering 203 races and 409 candidates – including voting records, survey scores, bill sponsorship and leadership support – mistakes will occur. If you see an error, please report it to GRNC immediately.
FEDERAL RACES
U.S. PRESIDENT
GRNC-PVF recommends DONALD TRUMP (GRNC ***) for U.S. President. Under the Trump administration, the BATFE has rescinded restrictions on use of AR-15-type pistols, Trump added two conservative justices to the U.S. Supreme Court, and the U.S. pulled small arms out of the potentially disastrous restrictions of ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations). Despite Trump making sympathetic remarks on “red flag” gun confiscation, he withdrew support for proposed legislation when gun rights supporters objected. Trump’s only disappointing action was to direct the BATFE to regulate “bump stocks” as restricted Title II firearms. By contrast, challenger Joe Biden (GRNC 0-star) has a long history of supporting gun control (despite his claims to the contrary), including voting for the 1994 “assault weapon” ban and recently saying he would delegate his gun policy to virulently anti-gun Beto (“Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15”) O’Rourke. This race is critical for your Second Amendment rights, and any vote for a third party candidate is effectively a vote for Joe Biden. If you would like to see the full Biden/Harris gun control agenda, go to: https://joebiden.com/gunsafety/# . Although some may object that we didn’t recommend Libertarian Jo Jorgensen (survey 100%, ****), the reality is that Jorgensen has no chance of winning, and may siphon off votes from Trump, which only helps Biden.
U.S. SENATE
GRNC-PVF recommends Thom Tillis (GRNC ***) for U.S. Senate. So you hate Senator Thom Tillis? Stand in line. You probably don’t hate him as much as we do. But the upcoming Senate race isn’t about Thom Tillis; it is about potential left-wing control of the U.S. Senate which, right now, Las Vegas odds-makers are favoring Democrats to win. This is one of four pivotal races for control of the U.S. Senate. If we lose the Senate, rabidly anti-gun Sen. Chuck Schumer will be Senate Majority Leader, and the filibuster (which has been used to kill numerous gun control proposals) will end, ensuring leftist control of the chamber. Democrat challenger Cal Cunningham (GRNC 0-star) studiously avoided putting himself on record on gun issues while in the NC Senate, has repeatedly refused GRNC’s candidate survey, and is no friend of gun owners. Again, a protest vote against Tillis (however much he deserves it) will only serve to give Schumer and the Democrats an opportunity to end private gun ownership as we know it.
U.S. HOUSE
District 1: With only a 25% pro-gun voting record, incumbent Democrat GK Butterfield is a consistent opponent of gun rights, earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star evaluation. Republican challenger Sandy Smith returned GRNC’s candidate survey with a perfect 100%, earning GRNC’s highest 4-star (****) evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger SANDY SMITH.
District 2: The redrawing of this district was forced by leftist-initiated legislation and now unfortunately favors perennially anti-gun Democrat Deborah Ross (GRNC 0-star), who consistently opposed gun ownership while in the NC House. Unfortunately, neither Libertarian Jeff Matemu or Republican Alan Swain returned GRNC’s survey, giving them 0-star evaluations as well. There are no good options in this district, but GRNC-PVF recommends you vote for anybody BUT Deborah Ross. If it’s any help, Swain has on his website, “Alan proudly supports our Second Amendment. In Washington, Alan will fight to insure that the Constitutional rights of our citizens to bear arms are never infringed upon.”
District 3: In this race, incumbent Republican Greg Murphy (GRNC ****) garnered a respectable 88% pro-gun voting record while in the NC House. By contrast, Democrat Daryl Farrow refused to answer GRNC’s survey, indicating he doesn’t want you to know where he stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends GREG MURPHY.
District 4: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger ROBERT THOMAS (survey: 98%, GRNC ****) over virulently anti-gun incumbent Democrat David Price (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 5: Incumbent Republican Virginia Foxx scored 100% on GRNC’s candidate survey and garnered an overall 96% pro-gun voting record earning a GRNC 3-star (***) evaluation. Democrat challenger David Brown refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating he doesn’t want you to know where he stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC–PVF recommends VIRGINIA FOXX.
District 6: In a race for an open seat creating by forced redistricting, Republican Lee Haywood scored 95% on GRNC’s candidate survey, earning GRNC’s highest 4-star (****) evaluation while Democrat Kathy Manning refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating she doesn’t want you to know where she stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC–PVF recommends LEE HAYWOOD.
District 7: Incumbent Republican David Rouzer continues his 100% pro-gun voting record (GRNC ***). By contrast, Democrat Kyle Horton and Constitution Party challenger Christopher Ward both failed to return GRNC’s survey, earning the lowest 0-star evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends DAVID ROUZER.
District 8: With a 100% survey score and 100% bill sponsorship (for national concealed handgun reciprocity), incumbent Republican Richard Hudson earned a GRNC 3-star evaluation (***). Challenging Democrat Patricia Timmons-Goodson refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating she doesn’t want you to know where she stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC–PVF recommends RICHARD HUDSON.
District 9: Incumbent Republican Congressman Dan Bishop (100% pro-gun voting record, GRNC ****) won his seat in a special election just last year and needs our help. Challenging Democrat Cynthia Wallace refused to return GRNC’s candidate survey, indicating she doesn’t want you to know where she stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends DAN BISHOP.
District 10: Incumbent Republican Patrick McHenry (93% pro-gun voting record, GRNC ***) has long supported gun rights. Challenging Democrat David Parker refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating he doesn’t want you to know where he stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC–PVF recommends PATRICK McHENRY.
District 11: In this open seat, left vacant when incumbent Mark Meadows became Donald Trump’s chief of staff, Republican Madison Cawthorn (GRNC survey 100%, ****) has distinguished himself as a conservative and gun rights supporter. Challenging Democrat Moe Davis refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating he doesn’t want you to know where he stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation, while Libertarian Tracey DeBruhl  scored only 74%, earning only two stars (**). GRNC–PVF recommends MADISON CAWTHORN.
District 13: As not only a congressman but also a gun shop owner, incumbent Republican Ted Budd is a gun rights stalwart whose 100% survey and  100% pro-gun voting record has earned GRNC’s highest 4-star (****) evaluation. But that means he is being targeted by national leftists. Challenging Democrat Scott Huffman refused to return GRNC’s survey, indicating he doesn’t want you to know where he stands on guns and earning only GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC-PVF strongly recommends TED BUDD. 
N.C. STATE  RACES
JUDICIAL RACES
GRNC-PVF recommends you vote for all of the following:
NC Supreme Court Chief Justice: PAUL NEWBY (R)NC Supreme Court Associate Justice (Seat 2 — Newby seat): PHIL BERGER JR. (R)NC Supreme Court Associate Justice (Seat 4 — Davis seat): TAMARA P. BARRINGER (R)Court of Appeals (Seat 4): APRIL C. WOOD (R)Court of Appeals (Seat 5): FRED GORE (R)Court of Appeals (Seat 6): CHRIS DILLON (R)Court of Appeals (Seat 7): JEFF CARPENTER (R)Court of Appeals (Seat 13): JEFFERSON GRIFFIN (R)
N.C. GOVERNOR
GRNC-PVF strongly recommends Republican challenger DAN FOREST (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Roy Cooper (voting rate: 58%, GRNC 0-star). Over decades, Cooper has been a consistent enemy of gun rights, most recently vetoing HB 652, which would have expanded concealed carry into churches co-located with educational property. By contrast, Forest has consistently stood tall for the Second Amendment. Any vote for a third party candidate in this race should effectively be considered a vote for Cooper and against gun rights.
N.C. LT. GOVERNOR
GRNC-PVF strongly recommends Republican MARK ROBINSON (survey 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Yvonne Lewis Holley (NC House voting record: 7%, GRNC 0-star). After Robinson’s impassioned speech against gun control to the Greensboro City Council went viral, GRNC awarded him an Honorary Life Membership. He currently serves as on the board of directors for the NRA and has made gun rights and freedom the centerpiece of his campaign.
N.C. ATTORNEY GENERAL
GRNC-PVF recommends Republican JIM O’NEILL (survey 92%, GRNC ****) over Democrat incumbent Josh Stein (NC Senate voting record: 38%, GRNC 0-star). Like Cooper, Stein has been a consistent enemy of the Second Amendment and must be removed.N.C. Secretary of StateGRNC-PVF recommends Republican E.C. SYKES (survey: 91%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Elaine Marshall (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).N.C. TREASURER
GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican DALE FOLWELL (NC House voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Ronnie Chatterji (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
N.C. SENATE
District 1: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican BOB STEINBERG (survey: 93%, voting record: 84%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Tess Judge (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 2: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican NORMAN SANDERSON (100% voting record, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Libbie Griffin (survey: NR, 0-star) and Libertarian challenger Tim Harris (survey: 89%, ***).
District 4: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger SAMMY DAVIS WEBB (survey: 94%, GRNC ****) over Democrat incumbent Milton (Toby) Fitch (voting record: 9%, GRNC 0-star).
District 7: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican JIM PERRY (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Donna Lake (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 8: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican BILL RABON (vote: 100%, ***) over challengers Democrat David Sink (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Anthony Mascolo (Survey 97: ****).
District 9: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican MICHAEL LEE (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Harper Peterson (0-star).
District 10: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican BRENT JACKSON (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Vernon Moore (survey: 36, GRNC 0-star).
District 11: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican LISA STONE BARNES (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Allen Wellons (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 12: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JIM BURGIN (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger John Kirkman (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 13: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DAN BRITT (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Barbara Yates-Lockamy (survey: NR, GRNC 0).
District 15: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger MARIO LOMUSCIO (survey: 98%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Jay Chaudhuri (GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Kat McDonald (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 17: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger MARK CAVALIERO (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat incumbent Sam Searcy (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Travis Groo (survey: 93%, ****).
District 18: In this open seat, GRNC-PVF recommends Republican LARRY NORMAN (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over challengers Democrat Sarah Crawford (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Jason Loeback (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 19: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican former state senator WESLEY MEREDITH (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Kirk DeViere (GRNC 0-star).
District 21: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger SEV PALACIOS (survey: 94%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Ben Clark (voting record: 20%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Ray Ubinger (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 22: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger RICK PADGETT (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Mike Woodard (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 23: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger TOM GLENDINNING (survey: 97%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Valerie Foushee (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 24: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends Republican AMY GALEY (survey: 89%, GRNC ***) over Democrat JD Wooten (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 25: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican incumbent TOM McINNIS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Helen Probst Mills (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 29: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican STEVE JARVIS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Duskin Lassiter (survey: 67%, GRNC *).
District 30: PVF recommends incumbent Republican PHIL BERGER (voting record: 100%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Wally White (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 31: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JOYCE KRAWIEC (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Terri Elizabeth LeGrand (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 32: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger VENK CHALLA (survey: 99%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Paul Lowe, Jr. (voting record: 50%, GRNC 0-star). 
District 33: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican CARL FORD over Democrat challenger Tarsha Ellis (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 34: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican VICKIE SAWYER (voting record: 100%,  GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Barry Templeton (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 35: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican TODD JOHNSON (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Jose Santiago (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 36: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican PAUL R. NEWTON (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Marcus Singleton (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 41: GRNC–PVF recommends Constitution Party challenger CHRIS COLE (survey: 98%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Natasha Marcus (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star). In 2018, Marcus made support for gun control the centerpiece of her campaign.
District 43: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican KATHY HARRINGTON (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger William Young (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 44: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican TED ALEXANDER (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger David Lee Lattimore (survey: 58%, GRNC 0-star).
District 45: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DEANNA BALLARD (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Jeanne Supin (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 46: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican WARREN DANIEL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****), who has been a leader for your rights in the Senate, over Democrat challenger Michael Barrick (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 47: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican RALPH HISE (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat David Wheeler (survey: 42%, GRNC 0-star).
District 48: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican CHUCK EDWARDS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Brian Caskey (survey: 35%, GRNC 0-star).
District 49: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends Republican BOB PENLAND (survey: 97%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Julie Mayfield (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 50: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends Republican KEVIN CORBIN (NC House voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Victoria Fox (survey: 72%, GRNC **).
N.C. HOUSE
District 1: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican ED GOODWIN (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Emily Bunch Nicholson (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). 
District 2: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican LARRY YARBOROUGH (voting record: 85%, GRNC ***) over Democrat Cindy Deporter (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 3: For this open seat, GRNC-PVF recommends Republican STEVE TYSON (survey: 82%, GRNC ***) over Democrat Dorothea D. White (survey: 67%, GRNC *).
District 4: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JIMMY DIXON (voting record: 96%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Christopher Schulte (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 5: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger DONALD KIRKLAND (survey: 88%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Howard Hunter (voting record: 11%, GRNC 0-star).
District 6: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican BOBBY HANIG (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Tommy Fulcher (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 7: For this open seat, GRNC-PVF recommends Republican MATTHEW WINSLOW (survey: 95%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Phil Stover (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 8: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger TONY MOORE (survey: 90%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Kandie Smith (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star). Smith also signed a national leftist petition to defund police.
District 9: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican PERRIN JONES (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Brian Farkas (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 10: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JOHN BELL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Carl Martin (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 12: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican CHRIS HUMPHREY (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Virginia Cox-Daugherty (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 13: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican PATRICIA (PAT) MCELRAFT (voting record: 92%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Buck Bayliff (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 14: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican GEORGE CLEVELAND (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Marcy Wofford (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). Cleveland is a gun rights stalwart and one of few legislators in the NC House with a perfect 100% on all gun rights measures.
District 15: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican PHILLIP SHEPARD (voting record: 95%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Carolyn Gomaa (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 16: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican CARSON SMITH (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Debbi Fintak (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 17:  GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican FRANK ILER (voting record: 85%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Tom Simmons (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 18: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger WARREN KENNEDY (survey: 95%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Deb Butler (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 23: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger CLAIBORNE HOLTZMAN (survey: 82%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun Democrat incumbent Shelly Willingham (voting record: 11%, GRNC 0-star) and Green Party challenger Abbie (Bud) Lane (survey: 84%, GRNC ***).
District 24: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger MICK RANKIN (survey: 94%, GRNC ****) over Democrat incumbent Linda Cooper-Suggs (voting record: NV%, survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 25: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger JOHN CHECK (survey: 97%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat James Gailliard (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Nick Taylor (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 26: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DONNA WHITE (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Linda Bennett (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).District 27: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger WARREN SCOTT NAIL (survey: 93%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Michael Wray (voting record: 33%, GRNC 0-star).
District 28: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican LARRY STRICKLAND (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Corey Stephens (survey: 35%, GRNC 0-star).
District 30: GRNC-PVF recommends Libertarian challenger GAVIN BELL (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Marcia Morey (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star). Morey is the one of the main architects anti-gun legislation in the NC House.
District 31: GRNC-PVF recommends Libertarian challenger SEAN HAUGH (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Zack Hawkins (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 32: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger DAVID WOODSON (survey: 82%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Terry Garrison (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 35: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger FRED VON CANON (survey: 92%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Terence Everitt (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Michael Nelson (survey: 100%, GRNC ****).
District 37: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger ERIN PARE (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Sidney Batch (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Liam Leaver (survey: 96%, GRNC ****). Batch also signed the national leftist petition to defund police.
District 38: For this open seat, GRNC-PVF recommends Republican KEN BAGNAL (survey: 82%, GRNC ***) over Democrat Abe Jones (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Richard Haygood (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 40: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger GERARD FALZON (survey: 81%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Joe John (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 41: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger SCOTT POPULORUM (survey: 92%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Gale Adcock (voting record: 11%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian candidate Guy Meilleur (survey: NR, 0-star).
District 43: For this open seat, GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger DIANE WHEATLEY (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Kimberly Hardy (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 44: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger HEATHER HOLMES (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Billy Richardson (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 45: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JOHN SZOKA (voting record: 91%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Frances Vinell Jackson (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 46: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican BRENDEN JONES (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Tim Heath (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 48: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger JOHNNY BOYLES (survey: 91%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Garland Pierce (voting record: 15%, GRNC 0-star).
District 49: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger DAVID ROBERTSON (survey: 92%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Cynthia Ball (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star) and Libertarian Cap Hayes (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 51: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican JOHN SAULS (voting record: 86%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Jason Cain (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 52: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JAMIE BOLES (voting record: 95%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Lowell Simon (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 54: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger GEORGE GILSON, JR. (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Robert Reives, II (voting record: 11%, GRNC 0-star).
District 55: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican MARK BRODY (voting record: 98%,  GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Gloria Harrington Overcash (survey: 88%, GRNC ***).
District 57: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger CHRIS MEADOWS (survey: 87%, GRNC ***) over incumbent Democrat Ashton Clemmons (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 59: GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent Republican JON HARDISTER (voting record: 98%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Nicole Quick (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 60: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger FRANK RAGSDALE (survey: 84%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Cecil Brockman (voting record: 7%, GRNC 0-star).
District 63: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican STEPHEN ROSS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Ricky Hurtado (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 65: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JERRY CARTER (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Amanda Joann Bell (survey: 52%, GRNC 0-star).
District 66: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger BEN MOSS (survey: 95%, GRNC ****) over incumbent Democrat Scott Brewer (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****). Although Brewer’s voting record might make him appear pro-gun, in truth the only bill he voted on, HB 652, was destined to fail due to a veto by Gov. Roy Cooper. Several Democrats in marginal districts undoubtedly got a “pass” from Democrat leadership to vote for a bill they knew would fail.
District 69: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DEAN ARP (voting record: 95%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Pam De Maria (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 70: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican PAT HURLEY (voting record: 94%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Susan Lee (Susie) Scott (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 73: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican LEE ZACHARY (voting record: 85%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger William Stinson (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 74: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends Republican JEFF ZENGER (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Dan BesseLeGrand (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 76: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican HARRY WARREN (voting record: 91%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Al Heggins (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 78: GRNC–PVF reluctantly recommends incumbent Republican ALLEN RAY MCNEILL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Jim Meredith (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). We say “reluctantly” because despite voting right, McNeill has been the semi-official mouthpiece for the NC Sheriffs Association, for whom he has repeatedly weakened pro-gun legislation.
District 79: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends incumbent Republican KEITH KIDWELL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Nick Blount (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). Even as a freshman, Kidwell has stood tall in defending the Second Amendment.
District 81: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican LARRY POTTS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Robert Lewis Jordan (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 82: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican KRISTIN BAKER (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Aimy Steele (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 83: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends incumbent Republican LARRY PITTMAN (voting record: 95%, GRNC ****), who frequently sponsors pro-gun legislation and is a leader for your rights, over Democrat challenger Gail Young (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 84: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends incumbent Republican JEFFREY C. MCNEELY (voting record: 100%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Gayle Wesley Harris (survey: NR, 0-star). Appointed mid-term, McNeely has quickly become a vocal advocate for the Second Amendment.
District 86: With reservations due to recent decline in voting record, GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican HUGH BLACKWELL (voting record: 74%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Cecelia Surratt (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 87: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends incumbent Republican DESTIN HALL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Corie Schreiber (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). Hall is a consistent Second Amendment supporter who occasionally leads on gun issues.
District 88: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger DAVID TONDREAU (survey: 81%, GRNC ***) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Mary G. Belk (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 89: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican MITCH SETZER (voting record: 98%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Greg Cranford (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 90: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican SARAH STEVENS (voting record: 93%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Beth Shaw (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 91: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican KYLE HALL (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Rita Cruise (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 93: GRNC-PVF recommends Republican challenger RAY PICKETT (survey: 88%, GRNC ***) over incumbent Democrat Ray Russell (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****). Although Russell’s voting record might make him appear pro-gun, in truth the only bill he voted on, HB 652, was destined to fail due to a veto by Gov. Roy Cooper. Several Democrats in marginal districts undoubtedly got a “pass” from Democrat leadership to vote for a bill they knew would fail. Moreover, Russell told GRNC representatives, in person (and with considerable hostility), that he voted for the bill only because it contained an unrelated measure for EMTs. Ironically, while claiming to support first responders, Russell also signed the leftist national petition to defund police.
District 96: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends incumbent Republican JAY ADAMS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Kim Bost (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). Adams is a longtime gun rights supporter who routinely sponsors pro-gun legislation. Bost is a leftist who touts gun control in her platform, including mandatory gun registration.
District 97: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JASON SAINE (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Greg McBryde (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 98: GRNC-PVF strongly recommends challenger John R. Bradford III (voting record: 96%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Christy Clark (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star). Bradford is a pro-gun Republican running to regain the seat he lost to Clark in 2018. Clark is a Michael Bloomberg “Mom’s Demand Action” gun control activist who has sponsored numerous anti-gun bills in the NC House. She needs to be removed ASAP. To understand Clark’s ideology, understand that not only does she support disarming you, she recently signed a national petition to defund police.
District 99: GRNC-PVF recommends challenger RUSSELL ROWE (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Nasif Majeed (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 100: GRNC-PVF recommends challenger KALLE THOMPSON (survey: 96%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat John Autry (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 102: GRNC-PVF recommends challenger KYLE KIRBY (survey: 92%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Becky Carney (voting record: 12%, GRNC 0-star).
District 103: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger BILL BRAWLEY (voting record: 87%, GRNC ***) over Democrat incumbent Rachel Hunt (voting record: 0%, 0-star). Brawley is attempting to regain the seat he lost to Hunt in 2018. Hunt is a leftist who also signed the national petition to defund police.
District 104: GRNC–PVF strongly recommends Republican challenger DON POMEROY (survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Brandon Lofton (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star). Pomeroy is a longtime gun rights supporter who will stand for the Second Amendment in the NC House.
District 105: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger AMY BYNUM (survey: 99%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Wesley Harris (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star).
District 107: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger RICHARD RIVETTE (survey: 99%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Kelly Alexander (voting record: 15%, GRNC 0-star).
District 108: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JOHN TORBETT (voting record: 98%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Daniel Caudill (survey: 52%, GRNC 0-star).
District 109: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DANA BUMGARDNER (voting record: 98%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Susan Maxon (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 110: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican KELLY HASTINGS (voting record: 97%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Christy McCleary (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 111: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican TIM MOORE (voting record: 96%, GRNC ***) over Democrat challenger Jennifer Childers (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 112: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican DAVID ROGERS (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Ed Hallyburton (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 113: GRNC–PVF recommends incumbent Republican JAKE JOHNSON (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over Democrat challenger Sam Edney (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star).
District 115: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger MARK CRAWFORD (survey: 97%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat John Ager (voting record: 11%, GRNC 0-star).
District 116: GRNC–PVF recommends Republican challenger ERIC BURNS (survey: 95%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Democrat Brian Turner (voting record: 32%, GRNC 0-star).
District 117: For this open seat, GRNC–PVF recommends Republican TIM MOFFITT (voting record: 96%, GRNC ****) over Democrat Josh Remillard (survey: NR, GRNC 0-star). Moffit is a pro-gun legislator who previously served in the NC House.
District 119: GRNC-PVF recommends challenger MIKE CLAMPITT (voting record: 100%, GRNC ****) over anti-gun incumbent Joe Sam Queen (voting record: 29%, GRNC 0-star). Although Queen tried to disguise himself by voting for a pro-gun bill he knew would fail, he has repeatedly voted against gun rights, helped the state’s main gun control organization raise money to attack your rights, and recently signed the leftist national petition to defund police. In previous terms in the NC House, Clampitt garnered a 100% pro-gun voting record and will support your rights.IMPORTANT: Voter registration deadline is October 9Early voting opens on October 15This message, supporting the candidates listed above, is authorized and paid for solely by the Grass Roots North Carolina Political Victory Fund. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate committee. For more information, check www.GRNC.org