Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton recently stopped by The Anson Record on his way to campaign events in Charlotte.
Dalton, 62, is a Democratic candidate for governor.
He sees three challenges in the state. The first is the budget. “We’ve seen a national recession,” he said. While he believes the economy is recovering, this process is obviously not finished.
He wants the state to invest in policies that can build jobs now and in the future so economic development is a must. Finally, he wants to avoid cutting education. “Cuts have hurt us,” he said.
“North Carolina has always been a state of opportunity,” he said. For that reason, he supports extending a temporary 3/4-penny sales tax. “We’re still in tough times,” he said.
Dalton said not extending the tax would cause harmful budget cuts.
One challenge facing the state in the future according to him is a growing population. The state’s population increased by 1.5 million people since 2000. He chaired the logistics task force in Raleigh and wants to continue to engage the growing population.
Dalton said he was opposed to Amendment One, which would make marriage between one man and one woman the only legal union in the state. Gay marriage is already forbidden by North Carolina law.
He believes the amendment could hurt job recruitment and retention, as well as confuse domestic violence laws and insurance plans. He said a similar amendment is facing a legal challenge and if Amendment One passed, the state may be forced to spend money defending it in court.
Before he became lieutenant governor in 2009, Dalton served six terms in the North Carolina Senate.