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VOTER GUIDE: House 113 Q&A

The House District 113 race is one of a handful across the state where two incumbents got double-bunked as a result of redistricting.

The youngest member of the state House, Jake Johnson, 27, is seeking his second full term after being appointed to the seat in August 2019. Before that he served as a Polk County commissioner for three years.
Like Johnson, David Rogers, 56, first came to the Legislature via appointment, in August 2016, and is now seeking his fourth term. An attorney, Rogers and his wife, Misty, have four children. They live in Rutherfordton.

Why are you running for the N.C. House?

Johnson: I am running for reelection because I want to continue being a strong voice in the capital for the citizens of Western North Carolina. In recent years, it seems like there is an all-out attack on common sense and our traditional values. If reelected I will continue fighting for pro-life policies, protecting the lives of the born and unborn. I will defend the Second Amendment. I will promote pro-business policies, because the real economic driver is the American worker and entrepreneur, not the government. I will always support pro-veteran legislation. I will always support law and order and do everything I can to stand up for our law enforcement officers.
Rogers: It has been my honor to represent Western North Carolina in the House since 2016, being able to help hundreds of families in with issues from unemployment assistance to access to medical care that had been denied due to red tape and so many other issues. It has truly blessed my family to be of such assistance to so many.


What priorities do you have if you are elected?
Rogers: Keeping our liberal state Supreme Court and liberal governor in check. To stop them from stripping our liberties from us for whatever emergency they name. Limiting the governor’s powers and continuing to lower taxes and protect our gun rights and protecting unborn children.

Johnson: Since the last election, I have kept the promise on expanding broadband and as chairman of the IT Committee in Raleigh, I oversaw the largest rural broadband investment in N.C. history. Those efforts are currently underway and will benefit thousands of citizens in our district. I also want to continue working with Lt. Governor Mark Robinson on protecting our children by making sure that they are being educated, not indoctrinated. We should ban the teaching of any racially divisive or sexually explicit materials at young ages. Also, I will continue sponsoring legislation to protect our elections, starting with implementing commonsense measures like voter ID.

The Ecusta Trail will soon be under construction in Henderson County. Do you support the Ecusta Trail? Why or why not? If you support the trail what if anything would you expect to be able to do in Raleigh to get construction funding?
Johnson: If the project can be done in a way that will be non-disruptive to the citizens that it neighbors and acts as an economic driver for the region, then I am in favor of moving forward with it. It has already received substantial funding from the state in the previous budget that was passed by the legislature and signed by the governor.
Rogers: We did vote to spend $7.7 million on the Ecusta Trail for removal of the Big Hungry Dam and the possible connection of the Ecusta Trail to the Saluda Rail Corridor for expanded trails. I did support and vote for that and will continue to support our trail system and expansion of those trails.

Republican leaders and Gov. Roy Cooper have cracked the door on a possible compromise to allow for Medicaid expansion in North Carolina. Do you support or oppose expansion?

Rogers: I absolutely do not support Medicaid expansion and will never vote for it.

Johnson: I remain against the detrimental idea of Medicaid expansion; it is throwing money at a broken system that has caused massive budget deficits and accumulated amounts of debt in states that have attempted it. I am in support of transforming Medicaid from a fee-for-service system (where the state is billed an unknown amount) to a managed care system where the consumer has better system of care, which includes increased preventative care, and the state knows exactly what we are paying per person in the system. If rolled out correctly this will provide a better quality of care at a lower cost to state and federal taxpayers.

If elected, what committees will you seek to serve on?
Johnson: If reelected, I would like to continue serving as a chair of IT, so I can continue my work expanding access to broadband in our district. I would also like to continue serving as vice chair of Commerce and Appropriations so I can continue fighting for investment in Western North Carolina infrastructure and making sure that we are doing all we can to help our small businesses. I also will request to continue serving on K-12 Education, Regulatory Reform, Veterans Affairs and the Wildlife Commission.
Rogers: Judiciary, Justice and Public Safety, Wildlife, Election Law, Courts Commission.