Religious liberty is at risk in the United States and deserves the highest level of protection in the law.
The Ten Commandments should not be displayed in public school buildings or court houses.
What does "separation of church and state" mean to you?
The concept of the separation of church and state reinforces the right of people to freely express and live their faith, even in public; without fear of government coercion. Free exercise means that you may have a faith and that you may live it. The establishment clause's purpose was to prevent the government from establishing a state religion and from intruding on the rights of individuals to worship and believe as they desire.
Judeo-Christian values established a framework of morality which is necessary for our system of limited government.
George Washington's comment that “Religion and morality are the essential pillars of civil society” is still true today.
What in the nature of mankind caused America’s Founders to carefully define, separate, and limit powers in the Constitution?
The founding fathers looked to the lessons of human nature and history to carefully craft a government with separate and limited powers as well as a system of checks and balance. The founding fathers recognized that people can be noble or evil, and that too much power can corrupt even the most well meaning person. If too much power was vested in one person or group of people, it could lead to the tyranny they fought against to obtain independence.
Briefly describe your spiritual beliefs and values.
I was blessed to be reared in a God-fearing, Bible believing, Christian, Conservative, military family. My dad is a retired U.S. Marine and retired Deputy Sheriff. Regardless of whether we were living in Adak, Alaska; Okinawa, Japan; or back home in North Carolina, we attended a Bible-believing church and were active in the church. I believe that the Bible is the Word of God, that Jesus is the son of God, and that salvation is a free gift of God that is required to go to Heaven after death on earth. I believe that we are not only to love God with all of our hearts, but that we are to love others as God loves us. We are all equal and created in His image, and life is precious. We are to show the love of Christ to others and try to meet their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs regardless of who they are, what they have, or what they believe. In doing so, we are at all times to follow God's commandments.
In light of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges allowing members of the same sex to marry, which justice’s opinion in that case most closely approximates your understanding of marriage?
Chief Justice John Roberts
I voted in these primaries and general elections:
2012 Republican Primary, 2012 General Election, 2014 Republican Primary, 2014 General Election, 2016 Republican Primary, 2016 General Election, 2018 Republican Primary, 2018 General Election
When you consider your views on a wide range of issues from economic and social matters to foreign policy and immigration, which of the following best describes you overall?
Please provide publicly available information validating your answer to the previous question.
As a Constitutional, Conservative, Common Sense judge, I believe that everyone should be treated fairly and equally and that no one is above the law, regardless of race, religion, social status, professional status, or any other status. I believe that each party to a case has a right to be heard. A judge’s job is to listen to all of the evidence before making a decision. A judge is to follow the Constitution and the law as it is written, not as he/she wishes it was. Judges are not legislators and are not supposed to be making the law; they are supposed to interpret and to apply the law as written. I believe that by following the law and by treating everyone equally under the law, people can count on impartial and fair rulings. I firmly believe that people should be able to trust that if chance or circumstance lands them in court that they can receive a fair an just outcome.
What education or experience qualifies you to hold the office for which you seek election?
Since 2002, I have presided over tens of thousands of cases. As a District Court Judge, I preside over cases such as domestic violence cases, juvenile cases involving the Department of Social Services, juvenile delinquency cases, child custody and support cases, equitable distribution of marital property, criminal cases, traffic matters, involuntary commitments, and other civil law disputes. During my first term, I completed all of the requirements to become a Certified Juvenile Court Judge. Believing that even judges should continue to be students of the law, I enrolled in the masters program that is jointly offered to judges by Campbell Law School and England’s Nottingham School of Law to obtain my LL.M. in Judicial Studies, and I am working toward obtaining a degree from both universities. This unique opportunity has allowed me to continue to hone my analytical and writing skills.
In what areas of law have you practiced?
Prior to being elected as a judge, I was an attorney in private practice and tried a wide variety of criminal and civil cases in district and superior courts and handled administrative, real estate, and transactional matters.
Have you ever been convicted of a felony or been penalized for sexual misconduct? If so, please explain.
Is there anything else you would like voters to know about you?
Fairness, impartiality, integrity, and a commitment to adherence to the rule of law all are essential characteristics of a good judge, and they are my greatest strengths. I am running for the NC Court of Appeals is because Judges with experience on the District Court bench are crucial assets missing from the NC Court of Appeals. Of the fifteen judges currently on the Court of Appeals, only three have trial court judicial experience and only one has experience as a District Court Judge. District Court is the Court with exclusive jurisdiction over all family law and juvenile law matters, and the decisions in these courts have far-reaching and long-lasting effects on children and families. The Court of Appeals reviews these cases, and it is important to have judges on the appellate bench who can bring direct, hands on experience with them to the higher courts. I am the only candidate for seat 4 with any judicial experience, and I bring with me eighteen years of judicial experience.
The U.S. Constitution and my state constitution should be interpreted as living documents, rather than using a strict constructionist or originalist approach in judicial decisions.
There are times when American judges should alter U.S. case law in order to comply with foreign case law.
I support the use of Sharia law as a basis for legislation and judicial decisions in the United States.
There should be more than nine justices on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Which current U.S. Supreme Court justice best reflects your judicial philosophy?
Justice Samuel Alito, Jr.
Which U.S. president serving after 1960 best reflects your political philosophy?
What is the proper use of legislative history in interpreting statutory law?
A judge's fundamental job is to apply the laws enacted by the legislature by looking at the plain language of the statute. However, if the law is vague, a court must interpret the law, and in doing so may interpret specific provisions by looking to the broader statutory context or to the legislative history of the statute at issue.
What specific text in the Declaration of Independence provides the critical basis for individual rights and the form of government guaranteed in the United States Constitution?
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness."