Rusty Jacobs

Rusty Jacobs is a politics reporter for WUNC. Rusty previously worked at WUNC as a reporter and substitute host from 2001 until 2007 and now returns after a nine-year absence during which he went to law school at Carolina and then worked as an Assistant District Attorney in Wake County.

As a reporter, he has covered a wide array of topics including military affairs, sports, government and damaging storms.

A bill awaiting the governor's signature or veto aims to rid North Carolina voter rolls of non-U.S. citizens. But critics see it as a blatant attempt at voter suppression targeting a minority community.

Heading into 2020, state and county elections officials want to make sure North Carolina voters don't let fears of ballot tampering or outside interference keep them from going to the polls.

In a time-crunched, court-ordered process, the North Carolina General Assembly recently redrew the state's legislative district maps to be used in next year's elections. A Wake County Superior Court had found the Republican-controlled legislature had gerrymandered dozens of House and Senate districts for extreme partisan advantage. The redrawn maps are now under court review.

The state house unanimously passed a spending bill Wednesday, but it wasn't the two-year budget plan vetoed by Gov. Roy Cooper late last month.

Republicans and Democrats at the North Carolina General Assembly are tangled in a tense battle of wills over the state budget. And the outcome may hinge on whether the Legislature's GOP leadership can lure some Democrats to their side on a veto override.

Leaders of the Republican-controlled North Carolina General Assembly put off likely defeat for at least one more day. Rather than hold an almost certainly doomed override vote on Gov. Roy Cooper's budget veto Monday evening, House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) moved the item to Tuesday's calendar.

A bill that would forbid local governments from providing sanctuary to undocumented immigrants passed the state House today on a mostly party-line vote.

Updated 9:45 | June 26, 2019

The joint budget plan worked out by Republican legislative leaders is one step closer to going to the governor's desk--and a likely veto.

Both chambers of the GOP-controlled legislature passed the $24 billion spending plan in preliminary votes Wednensday. Final votes are scheduled for Thursday.

Governor Roy Cooper signed an executive order Thursday, extending paid parental leave to the nearly 56,000 employees at cabinet agencies, departments and boards or commissions under his authority.

Twenty-one states extend in-state tuition to either undocumented immigrants or beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. Legislation proposed by state Democrats would make North Carolina the 22nd state to offer that tuition rate, but Republican support is an unlikely prospect.

State Sen. Dan Bishop (R-Mecklenburg) beat out nine other candidates in Tuesday's Republican primary in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District.

State Sen. Jim Davis said more electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids means less money for North Carolina roads.

Revised environmental permits mean new requirements for hog farms in flood-prone areas of the state.

A new election has been set for North Carolina's 9th Congressional District. And the May 14 primary is likely to feature a crowded GOP field.

A moment of reckoning has arrived for the newly appointed state elections board. The five-member panel begins an evidentiary hearing Monday into alleged vote tampering in North Carolina's 9th congressional district.

The North Carolina General Assembly got down to business Wednesday as lawmakers prepare for the budget-focused long session. Committee chairs were named and legislators from both parties unveiled their top issues, setting the stage, perhaps, for conflicting priorities.

North Carolina's 9th congressional district is not the only scene of a disputed election in the state. A trial is scheduled for next month to determine if Columbus County Sheriff Jody Greene has violated state law by taking office.

Updated at 4:15 p.m. ET

North Carolina's flagship public university removed the pedestal where a now toppled Confederate statue, known as "Silent Sam," once stood on a main campus quad, early Tuesday morning.

The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill announced at 1 a.m. that the removal had begun, and by 2:40 it was all over. A work crew with a large truck, a forklift and floodlights took the last piece of the base from the main quad, leading to cheers from a crowd that had gathered to watch.

Six local chapters of the North Carolina NAACP are suing the state legislature over its new voter ID law.

The Republican-controlled state Legislature steamrolled Governor Roy Cooper's veto of a newly crafted bill requiring a photo ID for in-person voting in North Carolina.

Governor Roy Cooper said he would not exercise his veto power if the Republican-controlled General Assembly would just remove one part of its recently passed legislation on the makeup of the state elections board and ethics commission.

The North Carolina General Assembly has passed legislation to reconfigure the state elections board.

The North Carolina Republican Party's executive director has seen enough to warrant a new election in the 9th Congressional District.

State GOP Chair Dallas Woodhouse said he wants the state elections board to fully lay out the facts in its investigation of North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race between Republican Mark Harris and Democrat Dan McCready.

The state elections board will hold a hearing this month on possible vote tampering in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race. The key question is whether there's enough evidence to warrant a new election.

Around 200 protesters gathered Tuesday morning in Raleigh's Bicentennial Mall across Jones Street from the North Carolina General Assembly.

The North Carolina Christmas tree supply might be a little tighter this year thanks to a variety of market factors.

The 2008 economic downturn slowed sales and that meant less space to plant new trees, which take 7 to 10 years to grow.

The state elections board is refusing to comply with federal subpoenas seeking confidential voter information.

Updated 8:30 a.m. | August 31, 2018

The torn-down Silent Sam monument was the site of dueling protests Thursday night. About 50 members of a neo-Confederate group were greeted by several hundred counterprotesters on the campus of UNC Chapel Hill. 

North Carolina joined California, Arizona, Nevada and Texas in seeing the greatest total increases in solar energy generation from 2008 to 2017, according to a report released Tuesday by Environment North Carolina Policy and Research Center.

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