Judge Dillon dissented in State of North Carolina ex rel. Utilities Commission v. North Carolina Waste Awareness and Reduction Network (2017).
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?
This phrase is not in the Constitution but rather in a letter written by Jefferson to a church group. Generally, though, this phrase means that the State is not to establish a preferred religion, nor should the State generally interfere with the rights of citizens to freely exercise the precepts of their religion.
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?
I believe that the Founders knew that absolute power in the hands of one person or a small group of people corrupts absolutely and, therefore, thought it best that governmental powers should be divided. The Founders did not believe that purpose of government is to tell us what rights we have. Rather, the Founders believed that our rights came from God and that the purpose of government was to protect those rights.
Briefly describe your spiritual beliefs and values.
I am a Christian. I am imperfect but am saved by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8).
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?
(Did not answer)
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.
I do not know about information that is out there about me, as I have never run for any other office besides my current job as a judge. I am generally conservative in my beliefs. On issues of economics, I believe that free-market, with some limited regulations to keep the markets vibrant, is best...as the Pilgrims discovered in the first winters after landing on Plymouth Rock. Socially, I am personally conservative. You hear it said that you can't legislate morality. The truth though is that every law is a moral choice. For example, we outlaw murder because society has decided that murder is wrong. But society also decides that not everything that is wrong should be a crime. For instance, lying (not under oath) is generally wrong, but not illegal. So I do believe that some things I believe are wrong should be made illegal from a policy perspective while I believe that other things should be legal.
What education or experience qualifies you to hold the office for which you seek election?
I am running for re-election to the Court of Appeals. There are 15 members on our Court. Five of the seats are up this election cycle. Each of the five races has a Republican candidate and a Democratic candidate. I am the only candidate seeking to be re-elected and have more experience on our Court than the other nine candidates combined. We are losing several of our senior judges and believe it would be beneficial if I am re-elected to maintain judges on our Court with experience. Also, I have a business background and hold a real estate broker's license, the only judge on our Court to hold one. I believe my background serves our Court well, as we hear a variety of civil appeals from all over the State.
In what areas of law have you practiced?
Real Estate law; Occupational Licensing law.
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?
I have been honored to serve these past eight years. I would be honored if given the chance to continue serving. I have lived in Raleigh all my life. I am the youngest of five children. My wife Ann, who is from Raleigh, is also the youngest of five. And together we have five children. I have found that one of the best parts of my job is the opportunity to mentor younger people. I have spoken to high school students on over 100 occasions since taking office. I teach a real estate class at both UNC and Campbell law schools. And I encourage young attorneys to seek out opportunities to mentor those coming behind them.
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?
(Did not answer)
Which U.S. president serving after 1960 best reflects your political philosophy?
Reagan and Kennedy- Conservative and charismatic
What is the proper use of legislative history in interpreting statutory law?
The purpose of a judge is to figure out what the law actually is and then apply it faithfully, rather than to mold the law into what that judge desires the law to be. I do not find it helpful for a judge to be defined as a "strict constructionist", "textualist", etc. Judges should not apply the method of interpretation if their intent is still to mold the law into their desired result. Rather, a judge should faithfully search what the law really is and apply the law as he/she finds it. I agree that one source in a judge's toolbox to help figure out what the law actually is...is to review legislative history. However, legislative history is not always dispositive.
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?
"endowed by our Creator with unalienable rights..." The purpose of government is not so much to tell us what our rights are. Rather, the purpose of government is to protect those rights which are self-evident, as coming from God.