photo of Congress
Lawrence Jackson,

Lawmakers returned to Capitol Hill last week for a short session before the November election. Their priorities include passing a spending bill to avert another government shutdown and coming up with a funding plan to fight the Zika virus. The pressure is on to adjourn the session quickly to allow embattled incumbents, like North Carolina’s Sen. Richard Burr, time to campaign in their home states.

photo of Congress
Lawrence Jackson,

North Carolina held its second primary of the year Tuesday and voters cast their ballots for representatives in Congress and a seat on the state's highest judiciary.

Photo: House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy
Public Domain / Wikipedia Creative Commons

Members of North Carolina’s Republican congressional delegation were calling for more conservative leadership after Representative Kevin McCarthy’s stunning withdraw from the race for Speaker threw Congress into turmoil Thursday.

Former U.S. Congressman Barney Frank
U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr Creative Commons/ USDA

Representative Barney Frank served in Congress for more than three decades.

His momentous career was marked by personal and political achievements; he was the first member of Congress to voluntarily come out as gay, he helped bring about the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and he co-authored the far-reaching Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. 

Image of Tommy Sowers
Duke University

Tommy Sowers served two tours in Iraq as a green beret. The Duke graduate earned a Ph.D. at the London School of Economics, and he taught at West Point and at Duke.

Sowers ran as the Democratic Party's nominee for Missouri’s 8th Congressional District in 2010 and later became an assistant secretary for the Veterans Affairs. He worked to help veterans gain access to benefits.

In the wake of events in Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore, Md., U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-NC) leads the Congressional Black Caucus at a tumultuous time for race relations in the country.

The congressman told Frank Stasio of WUNC’s The State of Things that he sees racial and socioeconomic tensions across the U.S. “There are Fergusons and Baltimores all across this country. It’s not unique to these communities. It could even be here in North Carolina,” Rep. Butterfield said.

Pipes from the Keystone XL Pipeline.

One of the measures topping the agenda for the new Republican Congress is passage of legislation to build the Keystone XL pipeline. 

Thom Tillis and Kay Hagan
NC General Assembly/US Senate


As the midterm elections get closer, education is a prominent topic in North Carolina’s congressional races. 

Cover to the first installment of John Lewis' March trilogy of graphic novels

Congressman John Lewis (D-Ga.) was once inspired to fight for civil rights by a comic book about Martin Luther King Jr. and his nonviolent protest in Montgomery, Alabama. 

Former congresswoman Eva Clayton chats with other speakers during the North Carolina Campuses Against Hunger conference at Elon.

 Note: Today's program is a rebroadcast of a program originally aired on March 25, 2013.

Ken Bosma / Flickr/Creative Commons

Last week voters in North Carolina chose Baptist minister Mark Walker over Phil Berger Jr. in the 6th District Republican primary runoff.  Walker was arguably the more conservative of the two candidates.   A new study in the Journal of Politics finds that political moderates are less likely to run for Congress. The study looked at state legislatures around the country.

Judy Butler Flickr user mystuff1 / Wikipedia Creative Commons

Teacher and former American Idol contestant Clay Aiken announced he'll run as a Democrat for the state's second Congressional district.

In a campaign video, he described his humble beginnings, growing up poor in North Carolina. He said he's got leadership experience.

photo of Congress
Lawrence Jackson,

North Carolina’s congressional delegation has been in the spotlight in recent weeks as Democrats and Republicans in Washington have argued over shutting down the government, the Affordable Care Act, and raising the debt ceiling. 

The idea for the shutdown came from Republican Representative Mark Meadows of the Eleventh District, whose aim was to try to dismantle Obamacare. But not all the Republican members of the North Carolina delegation agreed with the tactic.

photo of Congress
Lawrence Jackson,


Wednesday night, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling.




The Capitol Building On First Day Of Federal Government Shutdown /