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Sizing Up 2022’s Political Races with Morgan Jackson and Paul Shumaker
Episode 414th June 2022 • Voices of NCAJ • North Carolina Advocates for Justice
00:00:00 00:24:35

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Following a record-breakingly expensive primary season, North Carolina can expect big political races this fall. With much of the focus falling on the state Supreme Court and congressional races, political advisors have their work cut out for them possibly now more than ever. 

In this episode of Voices of NCAJ, host Amber Nimocks welcomes Morgan Jackson, co-founder of Nexus Strategies, and Paul Shumaker, founder and president of Capitol Communications, to talk about North Carolina politics. 

The two advisors discuss what May’s primaries say about the current political landscape in North Carolina, as well as voter turnout and the national interest in the state’s upcoming fall elections. From big picture trend lines to the smallest details, Morgan and Paul each bring their decades of experience in the political arena to their advising and campaign strategies. 

“Morgan and Paul are going to be with us at Convention in Charlotte on June 18. And they are going to talk a lot more about all of these things, especially the judicial races, which might be the biggest spending in the state's history,” Amber reminds listeners.  


🎙️ Featured Guests 🎙️

Name: Morgan Jackson

What he does: As a co-founder of Nexus Strategies, a Raleigh-based political and public affairs firm, Morgan has overseen some of the state’s largest and highest profile Democratic political campaigns and has advised governors, senators and members of Congress. Morgan currently serves as Governor Roy Cooper’s chief political advisor.   

Company: Nexus Strategies

Words of wisdom: “The truth is, if there's a path to the supermajority, [Republicans] have to win the suburbs.” 

Connect: LinkedIn | Twitter

Name: Paul Shumaker

What he does: As founder and president of Capitol Communications and co-owner of Strategic Partners Solutions, Paul is one of the longest-serving Republican political consultants in North Carolina. He has worked with members from the House of Representatives, House speakers, Supreme Court justices, and members of the General Assembly.  

Company: Capitol Communications

Words of Wisdom: “I will tell everyone what drives turnout is a candidate's ability to have money spent to drive turnout.” 

Connect: LinkedIn

🗝️ Key Points 🗝️

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • This fall, the U.S. Senate race between Democrat Cheri Beasley and Republican Tedd Budd will command nationwide attention. Two seats on the state's Supreme Court are also in play. Democrats now have a 4-3 majority on the court, so Republicans need to flip just one of these seats to gain the majority.
  • It all comes down to voter turnout. The rural parts of North Carolina have completely different priorities and concerns from the suburban and urban areas. The outcomes of these elections will come down entirely to who shows up to vote from each of these regions. 
  • North Carolina represents the country’s political plane as a whole. With a quickly growing economy and a divide between rural and suburban/urban populations, North Carolina and its political races reflect much of the country’s current political field.

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