Nov. 6 is election day, and in North Carolina, this will include local elections for the North Carolina House of Representatives, including one candidate, Jonathan Jordan.
Jordan has been the Republican representative for Ashe and Watauga counties since 2011. Jordan will run for his fifth term this year.
Jordan developed an interest in government after observing the process of politics while in college.
“I’ve just always been interested in government and how it affects our lives,” Jordan said. “I finally ran for office because I saw the condition of our state, and I have two children; I didn’t want them to inherit what I was seeing coming.”
The economy, specifically jobs and taxes, and children’s issues are important to Jordan.
Jordan also said he wants to focus on improving the state’s tax system to increase job availability.
“I think with a good consistent tax system, we will have lots of businesses and job creators come to our state and provide jobs for our citizens,” Jordan said.
Jordan said children’s issues are important to him because as a practicing attorney, he represented children in court who suffered alleged abuse or neglect.
“We’re improving the foster care system. We’ve had a big focus on that these past three years,” Jordan said.
Additionally, Jordan helped sponsor a campus free speech bill in 2017. Jordan said this bill prevents the administration from being able to take sides on free speech issues.
“Just a couple years ago, Appalachian had a policy where they had free speech zones, which were only a small portion of the campus,” Jordan said.
Jordan also said he has a focus on public schools and increasing funding for them.
“I think we need to continue funding like we have,” Jordan said. “We’ve increased funding to education and we’ve increased teacher pay. It’s not where it should be, but we are making steps that way.”
Although Jordan said he believes in the importance of public schooling, he also believes families should be able to access a variety of schools. Jordan said he also believes in improving access to schools including public schools, private schools, charter schools and homeschooling.
“Our children are not cogs in a machine. They learn differently,” Jordan said. “There are some children who are not getting the education they need in public schools.”
Jordan was a primary sponsor for the disabilities scholarship, a scholarship that provided up to $4,200 a semester for students who were not receiving an adequate education in their current schools.
Jordan said he considers the environment as important as costs to North Carolina citizens.
“The environment is very important, but we also need to compare the cost that things impose upon individuals and businesses,” Jordan said. “So I look at everything as a cost-benefit analysis.”
Jordan said he wants to protect the New River because it is a large tourist attraction.
Jordan said he believes in having a variety of healthcare providers for citizens and allowing insurers to cross state lines.
“We are working on a healthcare model now that is kind of a hybrid,” Jordan said. “It is a combination of vantage-chair organizations.”
Jordan also said he is not in favor of the Medicaid expansion and said the current system protects almost all of the vulnerable populations. Jordan said the new Medicaid expansion will add 500,000 able-bodied adults to the Medicaid role.
“I think the cost of that is too great for our system,” Jordan said.
Jordan said he places importance on education and children issues in an attempt to continue improvements in all aspects of the state.
“When I went in, we were facing a lot of problems” Jordan said. “Since I’ve been in, we’ve accomplished a lot of things.”
Jordan is running as a Republican against Democratic candidate Ray Russell.
Story by Cameron Stuart
Photo by Mickey Hutchings
Featured photo caption: Incumbent Jonathan Jordan gives his opening remarks in a debate against Ray Russell