As part of an ongoing series, WCQS is reaching out to lawmakers from western North Carolina and beyond for in-depth, wide-ranging discussions on the issues that matter to you. The goal of the series we're calling "In Their Words" is for you to have a chance to hear from the people running our local, state, and federal government in an open, honest, unfiltered way. We will update the series over time.
The series began with 5 interviews in early April 2015 when the legislature was on a week-long break, and we were able to have area lawmakers come by for in-studio conversations. WCQS reached out to members of both parties, and will continue to do so. In the initial week, WCQS's Jeremy Loeb contacted 5 Democrats and 4 Republicans, all from the area, and all in the same way: with a phone call to both Raleigh office and area phone numbers, and with a message to the e-mails listed on their official pages at ncleg.net. We heard back from all 5 Democrats, including: Representatives Brian Turner, John Ager, Susan Fisher and Joe Sam Queen and Senator Terry Van Duyn. No Republicans accepted our interview request during that week. They were: Representatives Chuck McGrady, Josh Dobson, Michele Presnell and Senator Tom Apodaca. We heard back from Sen. Apodaca's office letting us know he was unavailable, and Rep. Dobson's office telling us he was in Raleigh working on the budget. The decision was made to air all interviews as they came in, in the order they were conducted, regardless of party.
WCQS will continue reaching out, with the hopes of speaking with as many lawmakers as possible from all parties. You can find links to the conversations below:
Rep. Brian Turner (D-Buncombe)
Sen. Terry Van Duyn (D-Buncombe)
Rep. John Ager (D-Buncombe)
Rep. Susan Fisher (D-Buncombe)
Rep. Joe Sam Queen (D-Haywood, Jackson, Swain)