The Yadkin County Democratic Party held its rally and fundraiser dinner on Sept. 22 at the Yadkin Moose Lodge in Yadkinville.
Democratic Party Chair Larry Vestal said that the organization was able to sell 250 tickets to the event.
After an invocation by Reverend Marion Swann and the Pledge of Allegiance led by Yadkin County veteran TJ Neimeyer the guest speakers took the stage to get the Yadkin Democratic Party geared up for the upcoming election.
Thom Summey, a professional speaker, delivered the keynote address. Summey used several personal stories to illustrate the importance of Yadkin County Democrats standing behind their party and providing very clear reasons why they choose to be a member of the party.
“The Democratic Party can’t wait for people to ask our opinions,” Summey said. “We need to talk tour families, our friends, our relatives, people that ask us why we are Democrats and we need to make sure that we tell them enough that we can end the conversation with ‘that’s why I’m a Democrat, now I have a question, why aren’t you?’”
Summey told the audience to remember how important it is to not let the excitement of the presidential election cloud the importance of the local elections.
“In an election year where the top of the ballot is the president of the United States, we get fired up,” Summey said. “We get ready to work and we get ready to call our friends and neighbors and we vote and we watch the returns, but let’s not forget our local candidates. These candidates truly work for us.”
Local Democratic candidates were on hand to speak to their potential voters and explain their platforms and hopes in this fall’s election. Agriculture Commissioner Candidate Walter Smith addressed the audience to explain why it was important to have a representative in the position who was a resident of Yadkin County.
“Agriculture in North Carolina is the number one industry,” Smith said. “It generates over $70 billion to the economy of North Carolina and accounts for almost one-fifth of the jobs. It also has the greatest potential of growth of any industry in North Carolina. We’re going to keep our traditional farms strong because that’s going to feed the world in about 40 years when the population doubles so we have to keep those strong. But we’re going to grow North Carolina and we’re going to grow it through diversity, innovation and marketing.”
The Democratic candidate for Congress, Elizabeth Motsinger, was unable to attend the rally. Motsinger’s husband, John, was on hand to share that Motsinger was living proof that the government programs like welfare, food stamps and educational grants are programs that are not always abused by the American people.
He said that Motsinger was left to raise children alone after the death of her first husband and that the assistance of those programs made it possible for her to further her education and feed her children.
Next to the stage was Forsyth County resident and NC Senate candidate Delmas Parker. Parker shared some statistics about children in the county and the importance of focus on education.
“I was told that 26 percent of the children in this county under the age of five were living under the line of the federal poverty guidelines,” Parker said. “The Republicans in the legislature have taken $92 million out of Smart Start. They have taken 18 percent out of the state university budget. They have taken away low cost loans from the community colleges. Education and jobs go hand in hand.”
NC House candidate William Stinson was the final candidate to take the stage. Stinson poked fun at the statements recently released on major media outlets depicting Romney’s statements at a private fundraiser regarding the 47 percent of Americans who receive government assistance.
“After working about 3,000 hours last year my family finally got up above the median household income for the United States which is $50,054,” Stinson said. “Come to find out our presidential candidate on the other side said that I wasn’t in the middle class. He said that I needed to make between $200,000 and $250,000 to be considered middle class so even though I have a daughter at Wake Forest and a son at Forbush High School I don’t qualify for the middle class.
“Then I found out this week that since I got a credit from my daughter’s tuition and didn’t have to pay a whole lot of federal income tax I am in the 47 percent,” Stinson continued. “According to Mitt Romney I’m the scum of the earth.”
Stinson said that he’s glad that he’s a member of the Democratic Party because his party makes him feel like he has worth and value in our society.
Stinson also shared that it is important to him to him that the affordable health care act stays in place because he has a daughter with juvenile diabetes that he says won’t be allowed on his insurance after the age of 21 and won’t be able to find affordable coverage due to her pre-existing condition.
The Yadkin County Democrats wrapped up the event with a few business items. Vestal said that he offered $100 cash to anyone who sold the most tickets to the event. He said that several people offered to up the amount $50 making the total prize money $300. The winner was Joann Pardue who chose to donate the money back to the party.
Vestal said that due to the ticket sales and the money donated back to the party from Pardue the organization would be able to donate $1,000 to Walter Smith and William Stinson’s campaigns and $300 to Elizabeth Motsinger and Delmas Parker’s campaigns.
Vestal said that the party’s next meeting will be held Oct. 9 at Theo’s in Jonesville at 6 p.m.
Reach Lindsay Craven at 679-2341 or at email@example.com.