Excerpts from columns by Mecklenburg district judge candidate Bill Belk and Republican congressional candidate Ty Cobb Jr., in response to The Observer's endorsements of their opponents. Read the columns in their entirety at www.charlotteobserver.com/opinion:
From Bill Belk:
In February, I filed for District Court Judge because we have serious problems in our court system and Mecklenburg County citizens deserve better.
1. We need a court system that ensures our citizens are safe by closing the revolving door to repeat offenders.
Never miss a local story.
2. We need a system that provides a fair, cost-effective and expeditious resolution to those who go through civil court.
Each drawn out case in domestic court takes away precious resources of time, money, staff and judges to addressing cases in Criminal and Juvenile Court.
Divorce is a time for the Court to facilitate a healing process. Instead, judges are allowing lawyers to create a “trench warfare” mentality between the two parties – beneficial to neither but highly lucrative to the law firms representing them.
From Ty Cobb Jr.:
The Observer endorsed my opponent, Mel Watt, within hours of interviewing me by phone for 23 minutes. They must have some pretty weighty judges to make such a quick decision with so little info from me.
My approach for reducing government spending, which the Observer termed “impractical,” was to cut all government departments by 10 percent except Defense and some law enforcement agencies (who would have to “live” within previous year's budget).
I worked on federal five-year budgets for 17 years and that approach was common. Lee Iacocca used the same approach to rescue Chrysler and see its government loan paid back in full with interest.