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Candidates for governor address annual league of municipalities conference

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CHARLOTTE—Election Day is two weeks away and the North Carolina gubernatorial candidates are making their final campaign pushes.

Tuesday, Republican Pat McCrory and Democrat Walter Dalton took center stage in Charlotte, speaking at the North Carolina League of Municipalities conference.

“We expect a lot from them, and I think every person in North Carolina is going to expect a lot from them,” said James Scales, member of the Stoneville Town Council.

Some of these elected officials said they already have their minds made up, but say either of these candidates could be the next governor.

"The big thing is they wanted to hear and maybe get reinforced about where they're coming from and what they're proposing to do. But I think most people have made up their mind at this time,” said Ron Stephens, member of the Hendersonville City Council.

As Dalton trails behind McCrory in the polls, he said his main goal is to help voters realize there are stark differences between the two candidates.

"I have a real jobs recovery plan that'll put people back to work immediately, but also build jobs for the future that will improve education and move us forward. His education plan would take money away from the public schools, give it to the private schools. He wants to give big tax breaks to big corporations, people worth more than $5 million and reallocate that tax burden to the middle class, working families, senior citizens,” said Dalton.

Meanwhile, McCrory said he is focusing on his vision and strategy for recovery for the state, and he wants to let these cities and towns and their leaders know that he needs their help.

"To let my old fellow mayors and city council mayors that it's going to take a mayors attitude to fix the executive branch in Raleigh. I want to bring a mayors attitude and a mayor’s leaders skill to Governor's office because one thing I learned as mayor, you can't run, you can't hide, you have to lead. And right now, we need leadership in Raleigh, desperately, to fix our broken economy and our broken government,” said McCrory.

Regardless of who their favored candidate might be, everyone can agree on moving the state forward.

"We need jobs and education is going to be the key to everything. We have to bring our state back,” said Scales.

Join News 14 Carolina Tuesday at 8 p.m. for a special hour-long program, Up Close: The Governor’s Race. The program will feature more information about the two leading candidates. It will feature a more personal look at the candidates, their values, and the events and people that shaped who they are today.

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