Clayton Henkel

Clayton Henkel

Communications Coordinator Clayton Henkel manages the NC Newsline website and daily newsletter, while also producing daily audio commentaries and the weekly News and Views radio program/podcast.

Rep. John Autry discusses the attacks on transgender students and the promise of psychedelics

By: - May 1, 2023

It’s a hard truth of American politics that many state and federal lawmakers base their decisions and votes almost exclusively on how it will impact their own political futures. Often, even hugely momentous, life and death votes are cast with an eye to the polls and the views of TV talking heads, rather than the […]

Western Carolina University Professor Chris Cooper discusses early contenders in the 2024 elections

By: - May 1, 2023

Western Carolina University political scientist Chris Cooper discusses the fast-approaching 2024 election cycle — including the likelihood of a Biden- Trump rematch, the GOP gubernatorial primary in North Carolina, and the impact that the debate over abortion rights is likely to have.

U.S. Rep. Kathy Manning discusses reproductive freedom, the debt ceiling and a rise in antisemitism

By: - May 1, 2023

A recent ruling by a Texas federal judge sought to end the access American women have enjoyed for more than two decades to the safe and effective abortion medication known as Mifepristone. Fortunately, the Supreme Court has – at least for the time being – stayed the ruling. But  Congresswoman Kathy Manning believes the stakes […]

A view from above the North Carolina Senate

Obscenity bill heads to the NC Senate amid concerns of how broadly it could be applied

By: - May 1, 2023

The North Carolina Senate could vote as early as today on a controversial bill that would increase the penalty for disseminating obscenity while knowingly in the presence of a minor. The “Prevent Harm to Children Act” has raised concern among Democratic lawmakers and some advocates about the need for the change and how it might […]

The NC Legislative Building

Weekend reads: Billions more for school vouchers, denying treatment on moral grounds, and three blockbuster court rulings

By: - April 30, 2023

In this issue: 1. Senate advances bill to to spend billions of public money on private school vouchers North Carolina is moving to a “backpack” school funding model to allow parents to take state education dollars to the schools of their choice, even private ones, says Sen. Michael Lee, a New Hanover County Republican. Lee […]

As NC legislators target “obscenity,” the nation’s top librarian has her say

By: - April 26, 2023

Members of the House Judiciary committee passed legislation Tuesday that would increase the severity of punishment for intentionally disseminating obscenity while knowingly in the presence of minors. The ‘Prevent Harm to Children’ act (Senate Bill 579) would increase the penalty from a Class I felony to a Class H for violations. The brief conversation in […]

Erin Wynia of the NC League of Municipalities discusses the state’s housing crisis

By: - April 24, 2023

North Carolina is in the midst of an affordable housing crisis. With a fast-growing population – particularly in urban areas – this problem has been present for years, but it’s grown appreciably more dire since the onset of the pandemic, with the median price of a home shooting up 25 percent just since 2021. Recently […]

Sen. Graig Meyer discusses abortion restrictions, vouchers, and future transportation funding

By: - April 24, 2023

As anyone who pays attention to North Carolina politics is well-aware, the General Assembly was rocked recently by the decision of State Rep. Tricia Cotham of Mecklenburg County to switch her political allegiance from the Democratic Party to the GOP. The move gives Republicans a supermajority in both legislative chambers and would seem to boost […]

NC State Capitol (Photo: Clayton Henkel)

Weekend reads: Targeting tenure, transgender sports, and ‘significant strides’ recovering from pandemic learning loss

By: - April 23, 2023

In this issue: 1. New bill targets tenure, calls for scrutiny of research at UNC System campuses, community colleges Faculty tenure at UNC System universities and community colleges would end under a new bill filed Tuesday. House Bill 715 would “prospectively eliminate academic tenure and establish uniform contracting procedure for faculty at constituent institutions and […]

NC Child Health Policy Director Kaylan Szafranski discusses the 2023 Children’s Health Report Card

By: - April 18, 2023

Read this year’s report card. One of the most important and worrisome impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath has been the hugely negative impact on the mental health of our nation’s youth. Recently, the children’s advocacy group NC Child partnered with the North Carolina Institute of Medicine to prepare and release a 2023 […]

Disability Rights NC attorney Susan Pollitt and investigative reporter Kelan Lyons

By: - April 17, 2023

It’s a hard truth that North Carolina’s criminal justice system regularly metes out wrongful and inequitable sentences, and recently, NC Newsline investigative reporter Kelan Lyons detailed one such deeply disturbing case. Bobby Norfleet was convicted of a crime in 1979 as a young man – trying unsuccessfully to set a fire to a house – […]

‘I’m scared to become a teacher’: Gun violence sparks frank assessment by aspiring educator

By: - April 17, 2023

“Mike Hill, 61 Katherine Koonce, 60 Cynthia Peak, 61 Evelyn Dieckhaus, 9 Hallie Scruggs, 9    and William Kinney, 9.” Kurstin Howe opened her remarks to the Wake County School Board last week remembering each victim of the Nashville, Tennessee, school shooting in March. Howe is a Meredith College student and part of the future […]