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I’m a lifelong Wilson native, and you won’t meet someone more proud of that heritage than me. We have a fantastic public school system, but it can still improve. Health care and internet access are great in Wilson County, but they can and should be better. Those are a few of the factors that motivated me when I decided to run for office in 2016. In fact, I happen to share all those beliefs with a prominent member of the Wilson community. Her name? Rep. Jean Farmer-Butterfield.
Let’s discuss the big three issues: Economy, education and health care.
• She saved thousands of Wilson County jobs by leading the effort to keep Bridgestone Firestone in Wilson twice.
• Then she fought off attempts to close the Eastern N.C. School For the Deaf two separate times and assisted on a third.
• Her father owned a new and used car lot in town, a real estate business and a small farm.
• Jean grew up working summers on a Wilson County farm. What’s more “Wilson County” than that? Her great working relationship with the Wilson Farm Bureau continues to this day. She’s always supported small business and economic development in our community, the records are readily available to back me up. Vote for Jean to support our economy.
• She has committed to fighting for our most experienced teachers who were forgotten in this year’s state budget.
• She is endorsed by the North Carolina Association of Educators.
• She is a former public-school teacher.
• Her record shows a career of fighting for our teachers and our students, because she knows that an investment in our students is an investment in our future. Vote for Jean to support our public schools.
• Her work in the General Assembly lead to the creation of the outpatient facility at Wilson Medical Center.
• Leader in the state of North Carolina on issues concerning individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
• Founded and chairs a bipartisan IDD issues caucus in the General Assembly.
• Proposes expanding Medicaid to bring our tax revenue back to North Carolina to work for us. She doesn’t want to raise taxes, she wants better spending.
Jean voted for the constitutional amendment to ensure the right to hunt and fish. I’m a sportsman and I love being in the outdoors with a gun in my hand. I rest easy knowing that Jean is a legislator who supports my Second Amendment rights. She knows our county and she shares our values.
Jean is also one of the most experienced members of the N.C. House, which is a win-win for us. If the Democrats take back control, she will be installed in a major leadership role. If the Republicans maintain control but lose the supermajority, her healthy working relationship with Republican leadership, cultivated through a career of bipartisan legislating, will afford her a place at the table in the decision-making process. Either way, the people of Wilson County win.
Finally, across America, people are sick and tired of negative campaigning. While she has herself been the target of numerous hurtful and baseless attacks, she has refrained from returning fire. She’s focused on the issues, and she’s focused on her constituents.
Jean Farmer-Butterfield is the right choice for Wilson County. Jean Farmer-Butterfield is a winner. She’s going to prove it yet again on Tuesday. I’m excited to endorse Jean Farmer-Butterfield.
Charlie Pat Farris