#ncga: Mrs. Lexo goes to Raleigh?

President Harry Truman had the nickname “Give ’em hell” Harry.  The voters in state Senate district 25 very well could be sending “Give ’em Hell” Michelle to our fair state capital this year.

Michelle Lexo, a Republican serving her third year as mayor of the Moore County village of Whispering Pines, has earned a reputation for digging deep into the issues and asking a lot of tough questions.

She got senate president pro tem Phil Berger’s attention at a recent party gathering in Pinehurst.  

“He got up in front of the group, with me sitting right there, and told everyone how we’re getting a great senator in Tom McInnis, who is a fighter that will take care of us here in Moore County,” said Lexo.”I went up to him after his remarks and told him I thought it was highly inappropriate for him as the Senate leader and a party leader to be interfering in a primary like this.”

Thanks to redistricting, Moore County is in a district with Richmond, Anson and Scotland counties — localities currently represented by incumbent senator Tom McInnis.   Lexo and McInnis are locked in a battle for the GOP nomination  to represent Senate district 25 in Raleigh for the next two years.  

Lexo says her decision to run wasn’t really about McInnis.  “I was thinking a lot about it prior to redistricting,” she said. “Some politicians in Raleigh weren’t treating Moore County right, in my opinion.”

Lexo’s candidacy has not sat well with the powers-that-be in Raleigh.  She said she has received calls and other messages from party leaders in Raleigh to drop out.  It has been insinuated to her on more than one occasion that she would be “black-balled” in the party, whether she won or lost the race.

Some mailers recently went out, under the sponsorship of the NC Republican Senatorial Committee, promoting McInnis.  The committee is an organization controlled by senator Berger.  Lexo, a member of the district and state GOP executive committees, promised that there would be “serious discussions” down the road about party entities interfering in primaries. 

Lexo says she’s been upset with the political deal-cutting in Raleigh that has short-changed Moore County on sales tax revenue needed for school construction.  She says she’s noticed how the short-changing has hurt the village she currently governs.

“I would like to see a budgeting process where you can actually tie funding to an actual source,” Lexo said. “I believe the budgeting process at the state level is kept a little fuzzy, on purpose in many cases.  We need a lot more transparency.”

The tier system governing the distribution of economic development funds and services is another sore subject for Lexo.  Moore County gets labeled as a wealthy county — getting less economic development attention from the state than others.  Never mind that most of that “wealth” is concentrated in Pinehurst and Southern Pines.  The tier classification system keeps lesser developed parts of the county from getting some vitally-needed help.  

Lexo notes that her opponent, McInnis, appears to be fine with the existing  tier system. 

“The other counties in this district that have better tier classifications than Moore are not seeing a whole lot of benefit,” said Lexo. “They’ve got more than their fair share of job loss and poverty. Something needs to change.”

11 thoughts on “#ncga: Mrs. Lexo goes to Raleigh?

  1. I just hate it when the Big Boys in Raleigh think they can dictate who will represent us. Recently I received two mailers marked “Non-Profit US Postage PAID North Carolina Republican Senatorial Committee.” What an insult for the GOP to say that they are not coming from the party! Seriously, you really believe voters are that dumb. While the Daily Haymaker may not reach every voter with this story, I thank you for illuminating the nasty side of the GOP leadership.

  2. Terrible that the NC Senatorial committee is sending out mailers for McGinis!

    Michelle Lexo lives in Moore County and will represent us well. She has experience as Mayor of Whispeing Pines and understands the legislative process, We don’t need the “good ole boys”. We need Michelle!

    1. Ms. Lexo is a lightweight. Been a registered voter in our area around 5 years (appointed to town council and wasn’t even a registered voter, get that!). Has tried to run Whispering Pines more as a Property Owners Association rather than a town. Regulating Bee’s? Tree Survey’s? Limiting Growth? Letting town Police only ticket working people traveling through and not residents? First and foremost, Ms. Lexo will not change the tier system. It’s basic math, there are far more rural senators than those from urban areas. The bulk of the senatorial district is Tier 1 (poor). Let her go to Richmond,Scotland and Anson Counties running on killing their tier status. #NotVerySmart

  3. I wonder where else this may be happening. Using that mailing permit is unfair and unethical interference in local primaries by the Raleigh machine. Local Republicans should be deciding who our nominees are, not be dictated to by Raleigh. One also wonders who is actually paying for those mailings.

    Our local party leaders need to start calling out these. machine politics by the Raleigh political bosses. That needs to happen NOW, not after the primaries.

    Those telephone calls from Raleigh are also disgusting. The Boss Hog clique in Raleigh is a black mark on our party. Threatening grassroots candidates to try to force them out of the race reminds me of Tammany Hall. Were any of those calls from anyone at NCGOPe?

  4. What a disgusting way for Berger to treat a good Republican candidate. Michelle deserves better than this from Raleigh, and Berger should be ashamed of himself. She is smart, hard-working, and understands the community she is seeking to represent. Our Republican good ‘ole boys need to consider that Republican women outnumber them, and she be shown equal deference. Just sayin’

  5. Let me tell you how it works with the NCGOPe. There are very different standards for incumbent candidates from everyone else. Take Richard Burr when he last ran. The NCGOPe gave him access to our internet platforms but denied it to his challengers. We have him prime speaking opportunities but denied them to his challengers. It is just called protecting our guys against those upstart peasant primary challengers. Who do they think they are, anyway, challenging an establishment incumbent?

    Sen. McInnis has voted with the establishment on repealing HB2, giving the wind and solar people what they wanted, and lots of other things. He needs to stay in Raleigh so he can go along to get along.

    There is one exception as to incumbents, and that is if they are one of those yucky conservatives who still listens to the grassroots. Those we need to get rid of, but we need to help our establishment challengers from behind the scenes, like give them ideas of issues to run on and campaign suggestions, and set them up with our buds at the N&O to write articles about their races.

  6. Michelle is a bright spot in NC politics. I have witnessed her having disagreements with people, but I have never seen her be rude or vindictive to anyone.
    No light weight, she is firm in her determination to find solutions, and will not be distracted by personal pettiness. I have no doubt that she will seek to find the best solutions to make all of District 25 a better place for all its residents.
    A Senator Michelle will be a refreshing change from the usual nastiness of politics.

  7. I suspect that there are a number of county party leaders in other parts of the state who would be very open to sitting down with Mayor Lexo and listening to her thoughts on State party and state legislature leaders interfering in primaries.

  8. This is in response to Pilot_4u2 (whoever that is). Michelle was not appointed to the Village Council prior to registering to vote. I was Mayor at the time. I passed the Council’s selection of Michelle Lexo to the County Board of Election for approval. My mistake that she had not registered prior to applying for the Council vacancy. She registered prior to being sworn in. She may not have lived in the Village for a long period of time, but she was the best candidate to apply.

  9. Let me say right off the bat that I’m not a supporter of Mayor Lexo, nor do I usually have much use for the ultra conservative rants of “The Daily Haymaker.”

    Having said that, we should ALL be concerned about the tactics of state and local GOP leaders.

    The people are supposed to choose their representatives, not the other way around. The attempt to bully Mayor Lexo out of this race is but one example of the manipulation of our elections here in Moore County, which are supposed to be free and fair.

    We know that GOP leaders:

    * Threatened to blackball Mayor Lexo for challenging Senator McInnis in the primary

    * Strongly “suggested” to Representative Boles’ opponent in the Primary that he not challenge Mr. Boles

    * Installed Mr. Boles step father as a member of Moore County’s local board of elections.

    The GOP wants to control who Moore County sends to Raleigh, and they are getting away with it. Our local media has been SILENT on all of this.

    At least “The Daily Haymaker” has the courage to attempt to bring it all out of the darkness and into the light.

    1. Right you are! Whether one is a staunch conservative Republican or a moderate, it is local voters who should choose our nominees, not the party bosses in Raleigh. Voters need to send the party bosses a message by rejecting all of the candidates they are trying to push in the primaries.

      If this crap happened in my county, I would be asking my county executive committee and chairman to deal with it by giving the head of whatever Raleigh group was improperly interfering in our primary a choice. Either they could cease and desist and make a public apology for what they had done or the local party would publicly denounce them for improperly interfering in our primary.

      We should not tolerate these despicable machine politics.

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