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Fayetteville’s WIDU scores campaign interview with Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, candidate for Governor

Robinson, who faces Dale Folwell and Bill Graham in the primary, rejected candidate debates


Fayetteville radio station 99.7 WIDU scored a bit of a coup this week when Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson called in for an interview about his campaign for governor.

While Robinson has been holding numerous rallies and public appearances, he has refused to debate his two opponents in the GOP primary for governor: N.C. Treasurer Dale Folwell and businessman and lawyer Bill Graham.

North Carolina Public Radio political reporter Colin Campbell said on the X social network (which used to be called “Twitter”) that he’s only seen Robinson appear on national conservative cable channels.

Robinson could have reached North Carolina voters from the mountains to the coast on the Spectrum News channel’s Capital Tonight evening N.C. politics show. “Mark Robinson declined to participate,” show anchor Tim Boyum said on X.

Folwell and Graham had appearances. The Folwell and Graham appearances were re-published this week in Boyum’s Tying It Together podcast to give GOP voters another chance to learn their positions.

He also declined an interview with television WRAL News in Raleigh for its coverage of the Republican primary. Folwell and Graham appeared there.

On the other hand, Robinson did submit written responses to The News & Observer newspaper for its candidates’ guide, and for a guide published by Charlotte TV station WSOC.

WIDU talk show host Jay Reinstein chatted with Robinson for about 11 minutes this week. The interview was posted to Facebook on Thursday and Spotify on Friday.

Robinson talked about making the state more prosperous. He asserted that Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper “did some major damage” to North Carolina with his Covid-19 pandemic policies, and he bashed the Democrats who controlled the legislature before the Republicans took control in 2011.

Not once did he talk about Fowell or Graham.

How did WIDU land an interview with Robinson?

“Jay Reinstein sent an invitation to every candidate that filed with the board of elections to participate in our series, ‘2024 Candidate Conversations,’” WIDU owner Wes Cookman told CityView. “Jay explained this is our 36th year of offering all legally qualified candidates an opportunity to share their message on our platforms.

“The Robinson campaign left us a message that they would be glad to participate,” Cookman said. The only challenge was working out the scheduling logistics, he said.

CityView Today is a partner with WIDU in the Candidate Conversations series, and conducted some of the interviews.

Senior reporter Paul Woolverton can be reached at 910-261-4710 and pwoolverton@cityviewnc.com.

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election, governor, mark robinson