Saturday, January 07, 2006

Health Forces Hamilton to Forgo Re-election Run

Just learned, belatedly, that State Sen. Hamilton Horton is battling cancer and will not seek re-election to his NC Senate seat. My grandfather served in the NC House in the late '60s and early '70s. I remember meeting Horton on a visit to hang out with my grandfather while the General Assembly was in session. I remember him greeting me warmly. I also remember meeting Howard Coble, Jimmy Green and Ava Gardner's brother among others. My grandfather did a pretty good Jimmy Green impersonation.

All my childhood encounters with the pols were very positive. However, on one occasion after growing restless listening to the business on the floor, I wandered into the lobby. I guess I looked really bored and someone official-looking walked me to some type of early computer and gave me the go-ahead to give it a test run. I must have started typing just to see the green characters appear on the screen. Soon a legislator came up and chided me by asking me something like "do you know how much that thing costs?" Being only about 8, I had little chance to have a clue. (He no doubt made a pledge to his constituients to make sure taxpayers' money wouldn't be wasted in Raleigh.)

On another trip, my brother and I travelled to Raleigh with my grandfather, who had to do some summer committe work. Naturally, boredom set in and we decided to roam around a mostly empty Legislative Building. We decided to flick a few lights in a crowded hallway. We didn't get away without a mild scolding from someone who was keeping an eye on the place.

I digress. Two candidates, Gloria Whisenhunt and Nathan Tabor, have already announced plans to seek Hamilton's seat. Tabor's not catching any slack in the comment section at Ed Cone's blog.


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