Eric Mansfield: Live Q&A

We are pleased to announce that Eric Mansfield, Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, will join us on Wednesday, March 21, at 8:00 pm, for a live Q&A session about his candidacy and campaign. In advance, feel free to post any questions you may have or topics you'd like to talk through.

Thank you, Mr. Mansfield, for taking time from your busy schedule to talk with us.


Just in case all you BlueNC

Just in case all you BlueNC readers aren't paying attention to this race, you might want to put it on your list of things to think about. Know what I mean?

Terrific video. I have a question...

The topics you mention are clearly on everyone's, the economy, and health care. What I'd like to know is what are three specific things you feel state government could actually do over the next four years to improve the lives of all or most North Carolinians

I ask this because many of the things you mention as problems are somewhat outside the realm of state government's ability to broadly influence. I want to hear what you think we can do that should be done. Thank you.

Stan Bozarth

Stan, great

Stan, great question.

Specifically, continue the Affordable Care Act. Currently we have 1.8 million NC who do not have healthcare at a cost of $1.8 billion. As a physician I see the impact of this every day. I support it and argued for it on the Senate floor.

Restore fairness to our tax code. We should give better tax breaks to small business, S corporation, as well as C corporations since small business are the largest economic drivers in our state. We should also continue to support green jobs.

Thirdly, we should fully fund education so that we grow our economy as we grow our students!!!

Great tv ad

About the only question I have for Eric is: What did you do to tick off SEANC?

Of the two reasons Dana Cope gave (MedMal reform and opposing Obama's healthcare plan), the second one was apparently wrong and the first has very little impact on state employees. Leading me to believe there's something else that nobody wants to talk about.

If there is some other reason, I'd sure like to know.

I'll give a little background

This is leftovers from the 2010 primary.

Mansfield beat SEANC's handpicked successor to former Sen. Larry Shaw in Cumberland County in the 5-way 2010 primary.

Basically, Shaw declined to run again in 2010. SEANC didn't like that 4 other folks decided to run against a handpicked successor in the primary, and they're still taking it out on the eventual 2010 winner.


Even further background.....

......maybe SEANC didn't want someone who had supposedly been handpicked by Tony Rand.

Mr.Peppers, You give


You give Fayetteville residents and Dr.Mansfield so little credit. I doubt anyone in Fayetteville really cares about Tony Rand's opinion anymore. And if you look at Senator Mansfields bio, I doubt anyone needs to handpick him (for anything) for him to seek election. He has been a pillar in our community and a selfless servant to ANYONE who needed a hand. And he'll make a great Lt. Gov and continue his service to the people of NC.

Please let the big bad Spector of Tony Rand fade away, we here in Fayetteville have...

Maybe not in 2012......

...but in 2010, many in Cumberland County were still dancing to Tony Rand's tune. Maybe in 2012, it is just that Mansfield does not have a good relationship with labor organizations since the AFL-CIO just endorsed his opponent Linda Coleman.

I'll add one of my standard questions

Where do you stand on marriage equality?

I'll be in DC all week, and I doubt I'll be at a computer at the time of the live Q&A, but if I can drop off my question now, and pick up my answer next week, I'd appreciate it!

See below

He responded in the comment below: Amendment 1

Abortion rights

What is your point of view with regard to the trend toward new legislation designed to further restrict women's access to abortions?

right on!

Your credibility as a doctor on this issue can be very powerful. Thank you for speaking out about this.

Gay Marriage Amendment

If I vote for you what will you do to help my family if this amendment passes ?
And how do you feel about that fact that North Carolina claims that it does not and will not recognize "gay marriage" but yet it does for anything to do with welfare they count gay marriage ? Do you feel that it contradicts that states stance on it ? And do you think the rest of North Carolina knows that social security , dept. of social services , and other parts of the states government already count gay marriage ?

Ability to win in November

Why are you better suited to win in November than your opponent?

What makes you a more attractive candidate to the November electorate than your opponent?

Outline your current campaign organization to demonstrate your viability as a statewide candidate.


I think that either

I think that either Democratic candidate will be better than any of their candidates.

I bring a different perspective to the race. I've run for one office and I have served one term. I am new to politics and I have the view point of many of you. I know what it like to have to make payroll, and some times not pay yourself. I have seen the effects of patients having to make decisions about medicines because of the financial situation. I have heard the anguish of members who have had tough economic times bleed into their marriage. I know what its like to be a deployed soldier and I understand the hardships to families and to veterans who try to integrate into the community. I know what it feels like to be marginalized.

I can articulate those feelings into a new vision for our state. The thing that separates Democrats from the cynicism and acrimony of todays politics is that we still believe and aspire to our better angels. We believe that despite the odds or the criticisms truth and right will always prevail. It is this belief that allowed us to fight in the American Revolution. It is that belief that allowed women to fight for the right to vote. It is that belief that allowed a son of a single parent to become the President of the US. And it is what I believe.

My friend, Eric Mansfield

Dr. Mansfield, Sen. Mansfield, Rev. Mansfield, Mr. Mansfield. He has already said that he is against Amendment One. I won't take up any more space since he lives here and at this moment is my senator, but not for long. I lost everybody I love to redistricting.


Gay Marriage

I know you are opposed to Amendment One.

Please clarify...
How do you define marriage?
Are you in support of same-sex marriage?
Do you support civil unions for same-sex couples?

Thank you,

Youth Engagement

Sen. Mansfield
You're a pretty young guy and obviously a leader in the party. What should the party be doing and what will you do to ensure that more young folks have the opportunity you've had to represent their community?

And thank you for taking the time to visit BlueNC and discuss your vision for NC.

Thank you for saying I am a

Thank you for saying I am a pretty young guy!!!! I am a firm believer of representation for every demographic. I think that one of the problems in our party is that we don't groom our youth to become leaders. We should couple the energy, vision, and innovativeness of our youth with the wisdom and institutional knowledge of our more seasoned representatives to forge new opportunities. As the Lt Gov, I will make it my goal to cultivate the talent that we have in our Party. I will also conduct myself in a way that will be an example so that more young people can see that being a public servant can be honorable.

The appointment power of the office

How would you exercise the limited powers of appointment given to the Office of Lt. Governor to impact policy in NC?

Specifically, what groups do you believe are underrepresented on the current boards or commissions the Lt. Governor can impact?

The Lieutenant Governor has the ability to appoint persons to serve on numerous boards and commissions. These appointments are made on a rolling basis due to varied lengths of service required for each board.

The Lieutenant Governor has the ability to appoint persons to the following boards:

NC Biotechnology Center Board of Directors (3 appointments)
NC Blumenthal Center for Performing Arts Foundation Board of Trustees
NC State Criminal Justice Partnership Advisory Board (3 appointments)
NC Public Health Study Commission
Public School Forum Board of Directors
NC Rural Economic Development Center Board of Directors (3 appointments)
NC Sentencing and Policy Advisory Commission (2 appointments)
Southeastern NC Regional Economic Development Commission
Western NC Regional Economic Development Commission
Vagabond School of Drama Board of Directors (2 appointments)
Domestic Violence Commission
Teaching Fellow Commission
Boxing Advisory Commission
Biofuels Center of NC


I believe that our boards and

I believe that our boards and commissions should reflect the diversity of our state. As Lt. Governor, I'll work to ensure our various communities, such as LGBT, Latino and Asian, all have seats at the table. We develop great ideas by listening to diverse perspectives.

Wanted to stop back by

I wanted to stop back by and say thanks for doing this. I really appreciate any candidate that takes the time to make themselves accessible to the public in this way.

In addition to my question asking if he supports marriage equality (which is a different question than whether one opposes the amendment, because even Renee Ellmers does that), I thought I'd also ask about money in politics. What are your thoughts around disclosure laws, and public campaign financing, and Super PACs and citizens united and all that?

I would add questions concerning ...

Education - How would you propose to improve funding for education? what are your educational priorities?

Environment - Fracking, your opinion please. And what proposals would you support to bring green energy and green industries to NC?

Thank you for taking the time to do this.

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

We need to look for permanent

We need to look for permanent ways to fund education. I would do so by reforming our current tax code. We take a band aid approach to this issue which always leaves our state robbing Peter to pay Paul. Education is the most important budget item that we should be serious about making a long term funding stream. Early childhood education is a priority for me. My mother was an educator, I am where I am solely because of public education. I would have never been a doctor without great teachers. My son is in public education and my wife was Board Chair of the Partnership for Children. Great education leads to a great economy. Poor education leads to a poor economy. Fully fund education from cradle to career.


We don't have a "Like" button so I'm improvising.

Oh yeah, on fracking. I am

Oh yeah, on fracking. I am not as convinced as some on fracking. There are some serious issues and unanswered questions about fracking. It caused an earthquake in Ohio, there are ground water issues, and the list continues. We need a comprehensive aggressive plan for sustainable energy. There is a way to do it without causing irreparable harm to our environment.

please clarify re: fracking

So do you think there is a safe way to use fracking to extract natural gas?

Hi, Jane

I wanted to answer you in particular because I think the last line of my response regarding fracking is not as clear as it could be.

The direct answer to your question is "At this time, there doesn't appear to be". Obviously the hydrologic issues (apparent causation of earthquakes, for example) are worrisome in themselves, and the mounting evidence of aquifer contamination from injection and groundwater contamination from the wastewater are cause for great concern. Until those environmental concerns are safely addressed, fracking is too risky.

I also believe we should be developing our potential for renewable energy. Our state is poised to be a leader in developing renewable sources of energy, particularly wind and solar.

Senate v. Lt Gov?

Could you discuss your reasons for not running for another term in the Senate, and choosing to run for Lt Governor?

Senate v Lt Gov

After being in the Senate for one year, I enjoyed my time and learned a great deal about the process of our government. I also learned a great deal about the politics that keep us divided. As we fought in the Senate, I always felt that our message never got to the greater North Carolina. I am running for Lt Gov because I believe that this is the opportunity for our state to pivot and change the trajectory of what we become. We as a party did not have a person beating the highways and going to every community fighting for what we believe in as Democrats.

I want to expand the office of Lt Gov to be one that is a strong advocate for what we believe. Our government is moved by people. All great movements have been started by ordinary citizens who thought some law should be changed. I want to engage Democrats, make them excited about what we believe in, and be proud of who we are and what we stand for as Democrats.


Having had a recent exchange with a vocal CharMeck conservative who had no clue who Skip Stam was I can see that much of NCGA never gets out.

Greg you are right...I still

Greg you are right...I still have patients who ask me did I win the election.

Welcome Dr. Mansfield

It is an honor to have you with us tonight. You're a brave soul to dip your toes into the progressive blogosphere. We promise to take it easy on you.

Just kidding.

: )

Kidding about taking it easy on you.

And congratulations, you are now officially a blogger! Just don't tell your kids.

I hope this will be fun for you. Please don't feel the need to jump on all the questions at once. And don't worry about typos. We really just want to get to know you.

I heard that Lillian's List has endorsed your opponent. I guess that's one thing you can't really do anything about ... being a man, that is.

Amendment 1

Thanks James.

I would like to address the questions on Amendment One since it is an important issue in our state and is on everyone'e mind.

I am against Amendment One for a variety of reasons. It is redundant and unnecessary. It will have unintended consequences and will keep many NC families from having health insurance and basic protections that are currently provided. It will negatively impact our job growth, currently a large number of companies allow benefits for domestic partnerships and this law will make us weaker in our ability to attract new talent and companies to our company. FInally, this state should not discriminate against its citizens!

Finally, as an ordained Baptist minister, I do believe marriage is between a man and a woman. However, the state should be moving towards civil unions.

Slow typer

I apologize for being a slow typer!!!



as long as we're on social issues

I hope you will address the restrictions on abortion and reproductive rights James asked earlier. Your opponent has been endorsed by Lillian's List so does support women's reproductive rights. I hope you do, too.

Hit reload, refresh or F5 for newest content

To keep seeing the newest comments it's best to refresh (reload) the page. If you don't see a circular arrow in your browser bar just hit the F5 key.

Dr. Mansfield

I don't imagine serving as Lt. Governor is your top political goal. Have you thought beyond this race?

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

A reminder to all

We're going to lose Dr. Mansfield at 9:00 sharp. If anything he's written has triggered more questions, feel free to post them here ... and hopefully he or someone with his campaign will swing by later to tidy up loose ends.

State Board of Education

The Lt Governor has a role on the State Board of Education. It's not a role that has been very prominent to my knowledge. How will you approach it?

Dr. Mansfield,

You say that as a minister you believe that marriage should be between a man and a woman....this is explained in Leviticus, do you also believe that men shouldn't shave or cut their hair or we shouldn't eat pork or shell fish....etc.?

Thank you, thank you, thank you

Well done, sir. You have earned your blogger stripes with flying colors. Thank you for being with us ... and feel free to circle back at your leisure. Best of luck. Thank you for your service.

Thanks James for allowing me

Thanks James for allowing me to participate, it was great fun. If you have any questions please go to our website or catch me on Facebook. Thanks again.

Neat way to meet a candidate

Thank you, Dr. Mansfield, for taking the time, and for taking this on.

Thanks everyone.

Would love to see your after-action comments. In my view, Dr. Mansfield is one of the most poised and articulate guest bloggers we've had here at BlueNC. He did his homework, came prepared, and didn't duck (many) questions. Will be interesting to see if the campaign circles back for loose ends.

Also, I want to thank so many of you for taking time to join tonight. At our peak, we had just under 50 people online, with as many as 10 registered users signed in at once. We may not have been a crowd of thousands over the past hour, but over the next few weeks many thousands of voters will have a chance to see our exchanges and judge for themselves about the candidate.

I'm proud to be associated with all of you.

Signing off for now.


I thought it went well

Hopefully this will encourage other candidates to engage in an online Q&A, whether here or elsewhere. The clock is ticking...